Meeting Information

The Cassini-Huygens Mission in the Saturn System

October 21, 2020
Virtual Talk

Date: October 21, 2020
Speaker: Carrie M. Anderson, Planetary Systems Branch, NASA, Goddard Space Flight Center
Title: The Cassini-Huygens Mission in the Saturn System
Time and Location: 1:00 PM (See call details below) Virtual Talk (Zoom)

Abstract: The legacy of NASA’s Cassini mission began on 15 October 1997, when the Cassini-Huygens spacecraft launched from Cape Canaveral, marking the beginning of its 7-year cruise phase to the Saturn System. Cassini’s 13-year journey in the Saturn System enabled a much-anticipated detailed study of Saturn’s environment, including its atmosphere, magnetosphere, extensive ring system, and moons. Such discoveries included remote sensing and in situ measurements of Titan’s atmosphere and surface (Titan is a moon that possesses many Earth-like processes), as well as observations of the small-but-mighty moon Enceladus, which has an active south polar region that jets icy material into space from its sub-surface liquid water reservoir. In this presentation, I will highlight some of the key Cassini science discoveries, including breakthroughs from both the Cassini orbiter and ESA’s Huygens probe, in which the latter made history by being the first to land on a surface (Titan’s) in the outer solar system, marking the farthest distance from Earth that a probe has ever landed.

Biography: Dr. Carrie Anderson is a planetary astronomer in the Planetary Systems Branch at NASA Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC). Her research focuses on the remote sensing of planetary atmospheres, primarily in the areas of thermal structure and composition, using space- and ground-based data. This includes radiative transfer analyses of the outer planets, including the effects of aerosols and condensates, as well as data analysis techniques in the visible, near-IR, mid-IR, far-IR, and submillimeter spectral regions. Dr. Anderson's research has expanded to include transmission spectroscopy measurements of thin ice films using her SPECtroscospy of Titan-Related ice AnaLogs (SPECTRAL) high-vacuum chamber located in her Spectroscopy for Planetary ICes Environments (SPICE) laboratory at NASA GSFC. She is most known for her role as a Cassini CIRS Co-Investigator, in which she discovered numerous chemically-different organic ice clouds in Titan’s stratosphere. She was heavily engaged in the Phase E part of the Cassini/Huygens mission in the Saturn system, through both data analyses and Cassini CIRS instrument operations. Dr. Anderson is also actively engaged in the development of submillimeter heterodyne planetary flight spectrometers, aimed at targeting the chemical compositions and abundances of Enceladus’ plume material, Venus’ middle atmosphere, as well as water in the tenuous exosphere of the Moon.

Zoom Call Information

Meeting ID: 976 6317 5377
Passcode: 254954
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