Applications are open for the 'Cassini Scientist for a Day' competition

on 06 November 2015

Romanian students are invited to have a taste of life as a space scientist by entering the new edition of the 'Cassini Scientist for a Day' competition until 26 February 2016. School students from any of the ESA Member States and ESA Cooperating States must choose one of three targets that Cassini will image and write a 500-word essay to justify their choice to a panel of experts.

To enter the competition, students should study each of the three targets that Cassini will image and decide which one they think will yield the best science results. The three targets are:

Entries will be accepted from individual students or from teams of up to four students and the essays will be judged in the following age categories: 10 – 12 years old, 13 – 15 years old and 16 – 18 years old.

Each student or team may submit only one entry. 

Essays must be submitted to the appropriate national organiser who will select the winners for that country. 

Contact details for the Romanian national organisers:

Ioana Stoica
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Elisabeta Ana Naghi
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Winners of the competition held in the participating ESA Member States and Cooperating States will receive a special ESA goodie bag and certificate. In addition, the winning essays will be published on the ESA website.

Further information are available here.

About the Cassini-Huygens Mission

The Cassini-Huygens mission is an international endeavour between NASA, ESA, and the Italian Space Agency (ASI). In 2004, after a journey of nearly seven years the spacecraft, comprising NASA's Cassini orbiter and ESA's Huygens probe, was the first to enter orbit around Saturn.

In January 2005, the Huygens probe touched down on the surface of Titan, one of Saturn's moons. This is the only landing to take place in the outer Solar System and the furthest from Earth.

The Cassini spacecraft is still in orbit around Saturn, providing scientists with an abundance of information about the giant planet and its moons. Now in its final phase, the Cassini mission has about two more years to go until the end of its second mission extension, called the ‘Solstice Mission’. The final orbits of Cassini, taking place in 2016 and 2017, will be spectacular. The spacecraft will orbit closely to Saturn and its rings, before a final plunge into Saturn’s atmosphere in September 2017. Currently, and until the end of 2015, Cassini’s trajectory lies within the equatorial plane of Saturn, allowing a last series of close flybys past Saturn’s icy moons.

The Huygens probe was developed by ESA, and many European countries were involved in the development of the 12 instruments on-board the Cassini orbiter. Data returned to Earth by the Huygens probe, along with data from the on-going Cassini mission, are studied by hundreds of scientists from around the world. Many of the scientists participating in this international mission of exploration and discovery are European.