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Cassini ready for Saturn arrival
Posted: Fri, Jun 4, 2004, 8:55 AM ET (1255 GMT)
Cassini and Huygens at Titan (NASA) NASA's Cassini spacecraft is ready to enter orbit around Saturn at the end of this month, project official said Thursday. The spacecraft will fire its main engine for 96 minutes starting at about 10:30 pm EDT June 30 (0230 GMT July 1) to slow the spacecraft enough to enter orbit. A course correction maneuver last week tweaked the spacecraft's trajectory, ensuring it was on the proper course both for orbit insertion as well as a flyby of the outer moon Phoebe on June 11. Once in orbit Cassini will spend the next four or more years studying the planet, its rings, and its Moons. On December 24 it will release the Huygens probe, built by ESA, that will enter Titan's atmosphere and land on its surface on January 14.
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