Saturn: Images from the Cassini-Huygens Mission Exhibition at AMNH
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Saturn: Images from the Cassini-Huygens Mission, an exhibition of over 50 spectacular photographs captured by NASA's Cassini orbiter and the European Space Agency's Huygens lander, opened Saturday, April 26, at the American Museum of Natural History. On view in the IMAX Corridor on the first floor through March 29, 2009, the exhibition features dramatic up-close photographs of the ringed planet and it's multitude of moons, ranging from small individual images to large mosaics, sent over half a billion miles by the Cassini spacecraft to Earth.
Launched on October 15, 1997, Cassini, with its attached Huygens lander became the first spacecraft to orbit Saturn on July 1, 2004. Cassini has obtained the clearest views yet recorded of Saturn's atmospheric phenomena such as violent storms and streaming clouds; the complex structure of its famous rings; and its numerous moonsвЂ”the count of which has increased from 18 to more than 60 since Cassini began its exploration.
On Christmas Day, 2004, the Huygens lander separated from Cassini, and three weeks later parachuted to the surface of Titan, Saturn's largest moon. It was the first spacecraft to land on a moon other than our own. Titan is unique in several ways: it is the only object in our solar system other than Earth with flowing liquid on its surface (liquid methane instead of water), and it is the only moon in our solar system with its own substantial atmosphere. These pictures from Titan, the first ever taken on a moon other than our own are displayed alongside images of the giant geysers of ice particles erupting from the smaller icy moon, Enceladus, whose surface temperature hovers at approximately -200 degrees Celsius. The exhibition is divided into four sections: Saturn (about the planet and its atmosphere), Ringed World (about Saturn's rings), Titan and Enceladus (Saturn's geologically active moons), and Many Moons (Saturn's other moons). The exhibition also features a one-quarter scale model of the Cassini-Huygens spacecraft.
The exhibition curator for Saturn: Images from the Cassini-Huygens Mission is Denton Ebel, Associate Curator, Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences. The exhibition is co-curated by Mordecai-Mark Mac Low, Curator, Department of Astrophysics; and guest co-curated by Joseph Burns, Professor of Astronomy at Cornell University. The presentation of Saturn: Images from the Cassini-Huygens Mission at the American Museum of Natural History is made possible by the generosity of the Arthur Ross Foundation, and the support of the Eastman Kodak Company. The support of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration is appreciated.
For additional information, the public may call 212-769-5100.