This is what an artist thinks Huygens looks like near Titan. This picture shows Cassini (top middle), Huygens (left side), Saturn (right side), and the moon Titan (lower left).
Click on image for full size
Image courtesy NASA.
Huygens probe on its way to Titan
News story originally written on December 30, 2004
A spacecraft named Cassini is orbiting
around the planet Saturn right now.
Cassini carried another, smaller robot space probe with it on its long
trip from Earth. The smaller probe is named Huygens. Huygens will land
on Titan, which is Saturn's biggest moon.
Cassini let go of the Huygens probe on December
24, 2004. The probe will fly through space by itself for about three weeks. It
will get to Titan on January 14, 2005. Parachutes on the probe will lower it
through Titan's atmosphere.
After that, the probe will land on Titan. We don't know what the surface of
Titan is like. Huygens may land on solid ground, or it might splash down into
a lake of liquid natural gas. It may even plop down into a pile of snow made
of the chemical methane!
The Huygens probe will measure the atmosphere of Titan. It will also take
pictures. If the probe works, it will give us our first look at the surface of
a moon that nobody has ever seen before!
Shop Windows to the Universe Science Store!
Our online store
includes issues of NESTA's quarterly journal, The Earth Scientist
, full of classroom activities on different topics in Earth and space science, as well as books
on science education!
You might also be interested in:
Cassini is the name of a robot spacecraft. Cassini is studying the planet Saturn. It is also studying many of Saturn's moons and Saturn's cool rings. Cassini blasted off from Earth in 1997. It took Cassini...more
Cassini is on its way to Saturn. It will take the Cassini spacecraft over 6 years to get to Saturn. Cassini was launched on a rocket early in the morning on October 15. The Cassini spacecraft is a big...more
NASA’s rover, named Spirit, has landed on Mars and will soon be scouting the surface for interesting geology! Scientists are interested to know whether the place where Spirit landed was once a lake. Currently,...more
The Hubble Space Telescope is getting old. Every few years it needs to have astronauts visit it and fix worn out parts. NASA had planned to have the Shuttle visit Hubble in 2006. However, NASA decided...more
A spacecraft named Cassini will soon get to Saturn. Cassini will start to orbit Saturn on July 1, 2004. It will study Saturn for the next four years. Cassini had to travel for seven years to get to Saturn...more
A spacecraft named Cassini is orbiting around the planet Saturn right now. Cassini carried another, smaller robot space probe with it on its long trip from Earth. The smaller probe is named Huygens. Huygens...more
The Cassini spaceship flew by Titan on October 26, 2004. Titan is a moon of Saturn. Titan is Saturn's biggest moon. Cassini took some great pictures of Titan - the best ever! It also measured Titan's atmosphere....more