The Cassini Extended Mission

  • David A. Seal
  • Brent B. Buffington

Abstract

Based on the overwhelming success of the Cassini/Huygens 4-year tour of Saturn from July 2004 to June 2008, NASA Headquarters approved at least two years of extended mission for continued study of the target-rich Saturnian system. After a rigorous phase of science objective definition and trajectory design and analysis, the Cassini project initiated an efficient, scientifically intense and operationally challenging mission phase, including 60 orbits around Saturn, 26 close Titan flybys, and 10 close icy satellite flybys — including seven more flybys of Enceladus. At the conclusion of the 2-year extended mission, substantial operating margins should be present with some fascinating options for further extensions

Keywords

Vortex Dust Microwave Convection Torque 

Notes

Acknowledgments

The Equinox Mission owes its successful design to the heroic and sustained efforts over 2 years of the Cassini tour designers — Brent Buffington, John Smith and Nathan Strange — and to the dedication of the Cassini science community.

This research was carried out at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, under a contract with the National Aeronautics and Space Administration. Reference to any specific commercial product, process, or service by trade name, trademark, manufacturer or otherwise, does not constitute or imply its endorsement by the United States Government or the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology.

References

  1. Buffington, B., 080520 Reference Trajectory Update, JPL IOM 343M-08–003, 2008.Google Scholar
  2. Buffington, B. and Strange, N., Science-driven Design of enceladus flyby geometry, 57th International Astronautical Congress, Paper IAC-06-C1.6.05, Valencia, Spain, October 2–6, 2006.Google Scholar
  3. Buffington, B. and Strange, N., Patched-integrated gravity-assist trajectory design, AAS/AIAA Astrodynamics Specialist Conference, Mack-inac Island, MI, AAS Paper 07–276, August 19–23, 2007.Google Scholar
  4. Buffington, B., Ionasescu, R., and Strange N., Addition of a low altitude Tethys flyby to the nominal Cassini tour, AAS/AIAA Astrodynamics Specialists Conference, Lake Tahoe, CA, Aug. 2005, AAS Paper 05–270, August 2005.Google Scholar
  5. Buffington B., Strange, N., and Smith, J., Overview of the Cassini extended mission trajectory, 26th AIAA/AAS Astrodynamics Specialist Conference, Paper AIAA-2008-6752, Honolulu, Hawaii, August 2008.Google Scholar
  6. Cassini Project Policies and Requirements, Rev. E, May 2001.Google Scholar
  7. Cassini Extended Mission Science Objectives, Revision 1: Final Tour Selection, February 2007.Google Scholar
  8. Cassini Extended Mission Navigation Plan, Tech. rep., 699–101 Update, JPL D-11621, March 2008.Google Scholar
  9. Davis, D.C., Patterson, C., and Howell, K., Solar gravity perturbations to facilitate long-term orbits: Application to Cassini, AAS/AIAA As-trodynamics Conference, AAS Paper 07–255. Mackinac Island, MI, Aug. 2007.Google Scholar
  10. Hatfield, J. and Rinderle, E., User's Guide for CATO 4.3, internal JPL documentation, April 2001.Google Scholar
  11. Initial concept design for Cassini's post-equinox mission, Cassini internal presentation to the Project Science Group, January 2008.Google Scholar
  12. Jones, G.H., et al., The Dust Halo of Saturns largest icy moon: Evidence of rings at Rhea? Science, 319, 2008, 1380.CrossRefADSGoogle Scholar
  13. Marouf, E., Personal Communications, May 9, 2007.Google Scholar
  14. Okutsu, M., Yam, C.H., Longuski, J.M., and Strange, N.J., Cassini end-of-life trajectories to the outer planets, AAS/AIAA Astrodynam-ics Conference, AAS Paper 07–258. Mackinac Island, MI, Aug. 2007.Google Scholar
  15. Patterson, C., Kakoi, M., Howell, K.C., Yam, C.H., and Longuski, J.M., 500-Year eccentric oribts for the Cassini spacecraft within the Saturnian system, AAS/AIAA Astrodynamics Conference, AAS Paper 07–256. Mackinac Island, MI, Aug. 2007.Google Scholar
  16. Strange, N. and Sims, J., Methods for the design of V-infinity leveraging maneuvers, AAS /AIAA Astrodynamics Specialist Conference, Quebec, Quebec, August 2001, AAS Paper 01–437, August 2001.Google Scholar
  17. Strange, N., Russell, R., and Buffington, B., Mapping the V-infinity globe, AAS/AIAA Astrodynamics Specialists Conference, AAS Paper 07–277, Mackinac Island, MI, August 19–23, 2007.Google Scholar
  18. Uphoff, C., Roberts, P. H., and Friedman, L. D., Orbit design concepts for Jupiter orbiter missions, AIAA Mechanics and Control Conference, Anaheim, CA, Aug. 1974, AIAA Paper 74–781, August 1974.Google Scholar
  19. Wolf, A. A., Touring the Saturnian system, Space Science Review, 104, 2002, 101–128.CrossRefADSGoogle Scholar
  20. Yam, C.H., Davis, D.C., Longuski, J.M., Howell, K.C., and Buffington, B., Saturn impact trajectories for Cassini end-of-mission, Journal of Spacecraft and Rockets, 46(2), 2009, 353–364.CrossRefADSGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • David A. Seal
    • 1
  • Brent B. Buffington
    • 1
  1. 1.Jet Propulsion LaboratoryCalifornia Institute of TechnologyPasadena

Personalised recommendations