Watch live as NASA scientists reflect on Cassini now that the mission to Saturn has come to an end

NASA’s Cassini spacecraft plunged into Saturn’s atmosphere early Friday morning, vaporizing like a small meteor in the Saturnian sky.

Cassini began breaking apart in Saturn’s atmosphere at 3:31 a.m. Pacific time, but it took more than an hour for its last signal to reach Earth. Mission managers at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in La Cañada Flintridge shared the sad news that Cassini has passed at 4:55 a.m.

Cassini, the NASA spacecraft that expanded the search for life beyond Earth, dies in Saturn’s sky »

NASA officials will host their first post-Cassini news conference at 6:30 a.m. Pacific time — and you can watch it live right here.


Participants will include Earl Maize, Cassini’s project manager; Linda Spilker, the mission’s chief scientist; and Julie Webster, head of spacecraft operations.

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6:35 a.m. Friday: This story has been updated to reflect the fact that the Cassini mission has come to an end.

This story was originally published at 8 p.m. on Thursday.