We Sniffed the Plume!

Sascha KempfSascha Kempf
Cassini Scientist on Cosmic Dust Analyzer


Everything went great for the Cosmic Dust Analyzer (CDA) during this flyby. We got good data during the entire flyby—before, during and after closest approach. We recorded mass spectra even in the deep plume with no data gaps as far as I can see.

The High Rate Data rate count profile shows pronounced peaks at the time we traversed the jets. This data is key for pinning down the structure of the dust jets.

None of it would have been possible without an excellent team overseeing the instrument and the team at JPL for flying us through. Now we are looking ahead to an exciting period of evaluation.

–Sascha, who is heading off to pick up the kids from school.

10 thoughts on “We Sniffed the Plume!”

  1. Tolle Nachrichten! You Cassini bloggers all should know that these posts of yours lend a real immediacy to the news. You’re letting the fans see the excitement close up day by day in a way that no news releases could. Thanks.
    Hope the surface ejecta are distinct from the plumes.

  2. Happy evaluating! I know there are many people who are very curious about your findings. The entire mission has been incredibly stimulating thanks to people like you.
    Say hello to the kids:)

  3. One would imagine the solar panels had a decent wash down then. Well done the Cassini team…and an extra round of applause for that great little spacecraft.
    Keep on keeping on.

  4. The reason you don’t get alot of comments in your blogs is the lack of information you give us. You would think a place like JPL could tell people alot more about what actually happens during these flybys. I checked back and don’t see anything but the simple statement that it was successful and you got alot of data. Yeah that really made my day….what was the data? I myself won’t keep coming back when nothing is posted about what happened and what data you got. It’s just like the JPL websites on different missions that are never updated and the same old info over and over again. If nothing else I’ve learned from the rover missions website that 100 watts is enough to power a 100 watt bulb for 1 hr. I learned that back in the 60’s in school…tell me something new!!!

  5. As an Earth bound analytical chemist, I am astounded by the ability to conduct MS in space. Can you direct me to more information about the MS on Cassini? What type of ionization does it use? Are the particles directly injected into the source or do you have some separation method first? What mass range does it scan and what kind of resolution to you get? Thanks, and best wishes.

  6. Thank You for all the work you do! Can’t wait to hear about the results!
    I truly believe NASA is essential in the development of the future of the USA.

  7. Hi guys,
    Great work. One thing perhaps not well discussed nowadays, is that having a mission blog and making data widely available right after they have been collected, give the sense of a more democratic access to the information….the sense that behind the mission are real people and not a worldwide conspiracy led by the secret police.

  8. i am very pleased that Cassini had a great mission. i say this because for my science project, my and my friend are researching Saturn. It is great that there are very recent missions to Saturn so we can share them with our class-mates. Congrats!

  9. For me plasma stellar plasma is the food of the stars it’s the really energy, not exactly atomic but coincide with the placton of the profound seas of the oceans where this kind of particles serves as food of insects inside the ocean or fishes or plants inside too.

    This has to be with plasma or blood inside our body the transportation of food the conduction of energy, this cosmic dust or plasma I don’t know.

    It’s the consequence of a very good interpretation or decodification or must be information in process, but never communication???

    It’s not a star but a lot of dust could be a Big Bang…

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