The Cassini spacecraft made its closest approach to Saturn at 12 minutes
after midnight this morning. A retro-rocket was fired to slow it down, and
a fly-by mission was thereby converted into a permanent orbit around the
planet. All went successfully, and we should be getting some great pictures
This is a tremendous engineering achievement. We have never been in orbit
around such a remote body. (The Voyager missions of the 1980s were
fly-bys.) Congratulations to the mission team! Let’s look forward to some
great science from Cassini-Huygens.
Mission news (including live TV from mission control) can be got here. For pictures as they come
in, this site is slightly better.