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15 October 1997 - Cassini-Huygens Mission Launches for Saturn

On 15 October 1997 the Cassini–Huygens mission launched to Saturn. It launched with a Titan IV rocket from Cape Canaveral, Florida, USA.

The mission was a collaboration between NASA, ESA (European Space Agency) and ASI (Italian Space Agency) to study the planet Saturn, it's rings and satellites.

This mission was comprised of two big parts: NASA's Cassini probe that was meant to orbit Saturn and ESA's Huygens lander that was to land on Titan, Saturn's biggest moon.

Cassini-Huygens on the Titan 4 booster. Image credit: NASA

On 1 July 2004, almost 7 years after launch, Cassini entered Saturn's orbit.

The Huygens spacecraft remained attached until December 2004. It was landed on Titan on 14 January 2005, making it the first landing on a moon other than our own. After landing it transmitted data for about 90 minutes. 

Almost 20 years after launch, the mission came to an end on 15 September 2017, when the Cassini probe burned up after a controlled entry into Saturn's upper atmosphere.


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