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Waspie_Dwarf

The Huygens experience

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The Huygens experience

A new rendering of Huygens descent and touchdown created using real data recorded by the probe's instruments as it descended to the surface of Titan, Saturn's largest moon, on 14 January 2005.

The animation takes into account Titan's atmospheric conditions, including the Sun and wind direction, the behaviour of the parachute (with some artistic interpretation only on the movement of the ropes after touchdown), and the dynamics of the landing itself. Even the stones immediately facing Huygens were rendered to match the photograph of the landing site returned from the probe, which is revealed at the end of the animation.

Split into four sequences, the animation first shows a wide-angle view of the descent and landing followed by two close-ups of the touchdown from different angles, and finally a simulated view from Huygens itself -- the true Huygens experience.

This animation was released on the eighth anniversary of Huygen's touchdown on Titan as a Space Science Image of the Week feature.

Credits:

Animation: ESA--C. Carreau/Schröder, Karkoschka et al (2012).

Image from Titan's surface: ESA/NASA/JPL/University of Arizona

Source: ESA - Space in Videos

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Was there only that one picture sent back to Earth, Waspie?

Did the probe do anything else?

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Was there only that one picture sent back to Earth, Waspie?

It was the only image sent from the surface, but it sent a series of images as it descended.

Did the probe do anything else?

That depends on what you mean by "anything else".

If you mean did it do anything other than take this image then yes. It carried a collection of instruments which took measurements in the atmosphere. Other measurement were made as it touched down helping scientists determine physical properties of the ground where it touched down.

If you mean did it do anything after its initial landing then no. It was carried to Titan attached to Cassini and was designed to operate for only a short period of time. It did not communicate directly with Earth, but use Cassini to relay signals. Once Cassini was out of range its mission ended.

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Thanks, W.

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