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Yesterday, September 15th 2018, was a day of two endings. It was both the last day of the Delta-II, and the first anniversary of Cassini-Huygens mission completion. So, I'll put a little text-based tribute to them both, here in this thread. _______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ Cassini-Huygens was a mission of firsts. A trailblazer. First mission to orbit Saturn. First soft-landing in the outer solar system. Weighing 6 tons when fully fuelled, it is going to be a long time before a mission of this scale is launched again. Spending 13 years (half a Saturnian year) at Saturn, it observed the changes in the Saturn system over Spring and Summer. Discovered 7 moons (6 of which are named). Took 453048 images.162 targeted flybys of Saturnian moons. 360 engine burns. 635 GB of data collected. Its ride-along sister probe Huygens made the first soft landing in the outer solar system, landing on Titan on January 15th, 2005. It discovered methane rivers and lakes on Titan. Evidence of salty, liquid water sea heated by hydrothermal vents under Enceladus. Tests of general relativity. Radio occultations of the rings, revealing their composition and particle size. Verifying spokes in the rings, first confirmed by the Voyagers. And, on September 15, 2017, it literally tasted the atmosphere of Saturn itself. 1500 km above the cloud tops, Cassini entered the Saturnian atmosphere. Struggling to keep radio contact, signal was finally lost 7:55:46 AM EDT on 15th September 2017. The spacecraft is believed to have broken up 45 seconds after loss of contact. And so, on that fateful day, the probe was united with the planet it had studied for over a decade. Ad astra, Cassini-Huygens. We will certainly miss you. The Delta-II rocket was a reliable workhorse. Launching 54 science missions for NASA, our current understanding of the solar system wouldn't have been possible without it. It launched 2001 Mars Odyssey, Dawn, Deep Impact, Genesis, Mars Phoenix, MESSENGER, NEAR-Shoemaker, both STEREO spacecraft, both MER rovers Spirit and Opportunity (Hang in there buddy!), WISE, WMAP, Spitzer Space Telescope, all 5 THEMIS spacecrafts, the Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope, 24 GPS satellites, 60 Iridium satellites (which are now an endangered species, if you've been paying attention to Scott's science videos), the Kepler spacecraft, and so much more. Without Delta-II, we wouldn't have had any of this: (Asteroid Eros imaged by NEAR-Shoemaker) (Comet Tempel-1 imaged by Deep Impact) (Vesta imaged by Dawn) (Asteroid Mathilde imaged by NEAR-Shoemaker) (Comet Siding Spring as imaged by WISE) (CMB as measured by WMAP) (Polygonal Martian terrain as imaged by Mars Phoenix) (The sun, as imaged by one of the STEREO spacecraft) (Heinze 206 as imaged by Spitzer) (Mercury, as imaged by MESSENGER) On 15th September 2018 at 13:02 UTC, the final Delta-II launched ICESat-2 out of SLC-2W at Vandenberg Air Force Base in California. The mission went as planned, and earned the launch vehicle a streak of 100 successful missions in a row. Thus ended the illustrious career of the Delta-II. Ad astra, Delta-II. Goodbye, old friend. ________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ (Feel free to add your own tributes below, in any format.) ________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ Edit: I've decided to make this a tribute thread to other spacecraft too, as Dawn and Kepler have come to an end.
Hey, everyone, I would like to first say thank you to all the people who helped me with my issues and to all the mod developers who improve the gameplay of KSP. Now for the reason, I'm writing this, I am going offline, permanently. This is due to the reason that too much to do in my life that I can't stay on point, especially around this time due to tests. So I am sad to make this decision but I know it is the right one. So the time I will be going is May 18, 2018, at 1005 hours CST. But I'll leave you all with two things: "Nothing in this universe infinite it only finite until someone makes it infinite."-SGT Doomball
Hello everybody, I had a huge essay written, but I deleted it in favor of a short, simple, to the point post. I'm resigning as of this thread. The KSP community has nothing left for me and I just randomly click links trying to find something on here that I have even a blink of interest in. I don't play KSP anymore, either. I'm also trying to cut down on my use of electronics and this forum isn't helping any. I'm moving onto greener pastures, as the saying goes. I will be reading, but not replying to any comments left on this thread. Merry Christmas to you all. Goodbye, Farewell, and Amen. ~Flymetothemun, signing off for the last time.