An Invitation for Success

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It was a warm summer morning and the sun was on its way up to blind the morning drivers once more. The excitement welled up within me like how it used to when I was on my way to compete in a larger event.

Every season I search endlessly through testing and theorizing to find the best, most fun deck that crushes the metagame from just the right angle. Sometimes I find just what I was looking for and wreck up an event. Usually it happens right when we have a new format forming. I tend to be a little bit ahead of the metagame right at the beginning.

That edge is the leverage I use to be successful at this game. Of course it doesn’t work every time, and I am left with a few meager wins before many losses, but more often than not, my analysis of the initial metagame has proven effective.

As the long morning drive passes by, I found myself thinking about whether or not today would be one of those times I had my finger on the pulse of Standard or if my day would be ending early. Of course I had written an article about the deck I was going to play, but as usual it was not as well received as I had hoped. Many of my decks seem a bit unusual and abnormal so players don’t necessarily want to jump on board with “some crazy deck.” I’m no Travis Woo or Conley Woods, but I’ve had some off-the-wall brews that have been quite successful for me.

I was feeling really good about my deck today though. It was aggressive, resilient, and also had the ability to sort of combo-kill my opponent who thought they were sitting pretty at whatever comfortable life total they were at. I was still surprised that more players did not respect the design I had come up with though because it was based on a previously successful archetype.

And that’s where it all started, with a short road trip to a TCG Player event with some friends for a day of fun and Magic. As it turns out, I did have it all figured out and only one player stopped me from winning the event. I met him in the finals with my RWB Human Aristocrats deck, which is now one of my favorite decks of all time. He was the only one that event who overcame the humans turning into zombies and their vampire friends.

After the event was over, I found myself playing and winning a lot with that deck. My success was mainly at TCG Player events and so attending the TCG Player Invitational seemed like an obvious requirement to make it to.

Fast forward three months and I was freaking out about what I should play at the upcoming huge event. I had more than enough points for entry plus my two byes, but what I didn’t have were decks. That’s right, decks plural. For some reason, many players did not know this event was multi-format. Anyone playing in the Invitational would be playing both Standard and Modern. To my knowledge, this was the first event that was both of these two formats. I was excited but I needed to nail down my deck selections.

Initially when Theros created a new Standard environment for us to compete in, I was playing a midrange Naya Zoo deck I called Naya Forgemaster due to the game-winning Purphoros, God of the Forge in the deck. Inconsistency led me to try other decks like Mono-Red Devotion splashing green, but that deck was just as sketchy as the Naya deck.

I needed something powerful that would also play well over two days of competition. With a longer event like this or a Grand Prix, it’s important that your deck be able to hold up well over many rounds of play. An all-in deck may be a poor choice because of how many rounds you will be required to play. Since this was two formats, that risk was lessened, but still I wanted something consistent.

For a while, I had been toying with Master of Waves decks because it was one of the cards I identified early as a powerhouse. There was not a time when I considered playing him in a single-color deck, but there were many two-color decks I tried him in.

My goal was to build a more midrange deck that could protect Master so your finisher stayed on the board. Thus I was playing cards like Syncopate, Negate, and Dispel. As it turns out, if you are playing a bunch of aggressive creatures before turn four, your opponent will have to deal with them or die and then you can follow up with a Master to finish them off.

Since I needed a new deck, I decided to try the successful Master deck, Mono-Blue Devotion, and see how I liked it. My main concern with the deck was having as aggressive a start as possible so my opponent did not have much time to stabilize. It was for that reason that I wanted to try out Galerider Sliver. The card quickly impressed me with its ability to evolve Cloudfin Raptor as well as help your Mutavaults fly over your opponent’s blockers. Mono-Blue was also consistent and that was a quality I was looking for. Here’s the list I played at the event.

Mono-Blue Devotion

As you can see, I ended up running the list I posted in last week’s article. Overall, I was happy with the deck. Because everyone had tested against this deck, my opponents knew basically how to play against it so I did not have my normal edge of playing something unexpected.

I found the Cyclonic Rifts underwhelming and sided them out almost every match. I did like the more creatures version with the Galeriders but I think the spells maindeck could be changed to Rapid Hybridization or maybe something else. I enjoy playing the deck, but I may try adding a second color in the future. Take a look at how the Standard portion played out.

Day 1 - Standard

Round 1 - Bye

Round 2 - Bye

Round 3 – Mono Black Devotion 2-1

This match is always close, but if you have an early aggressive curve you should win most of the time. What you want to watch out for are their double-Desecration Demon hands. Those ones make for the most difficult games.

Round 4 – Esper Control 2-0

Even though this seems like an awful matchup, it's in your favor more than you might think. You need to force them into a place where they are tapped out for Jace, Architect of Thought or Supreme Verdict so you can resolve Bident of Thassa. Once Bident is online, they won't be able to keep up with your card advantage.

Post-board, I like siding out some one-cost creatures and bringing in Gainsay as well as Aetherling. You don't always need those cards to win, but they make it much easier for you to close the game.

Round 5 – Naya Control 0-2

I think this is a tough matchup, but your win percentage is directly dependent on the number of Anger of the Gods they draw. Usually they need two Angers plus strong followup plays.

Ending 2-1 (4-1) was disappointing but my loss was a bit out of my control. My opponent’s hand was basically perfect in game one, and in game two I couldn't cast my spells. It would have been interesting to see what happened in game three, but I tried not to focus on it too much because we had some Modern to play.

Deciding on my Modern deck was a little challenging as well. I’ve talked a bit about the Grixis Delver deck that I was piloting in PTQ’s and GP’s before in my articles. That deck was naturally a possible contender for my Modern deck, but I ended up not going with it because of what I expected the metagame to look like.

It’s important to consider all the factors going into an event. Take this event for instance. Players most likely qualified for this event by trading for their points or by winning in Standard. Many players would be scrambling for a Modern deck I felt safe to assume there would be more Affinity, Burn, and Jund as well as some random decks through most of the field.

As it turns out, I was correct in this assumption. I talked to countless players that were just hoping to get lucky in Modern. One guy was even playing Slivers because he did not have any other Modern cards. In a field like that, Grixis Delver does not seem well positioned to me.

Going on the assumption that the metagame would be random and out of the ordinary, I wanted to have a proactive and powerful game plan. It wouldn’t hurt if it was a deck that I had played before so that I could base some of my lines of play on actual experience rather than just theory. This Modern event felt more like the second week of Theros Standard than an actual developed metagame.

It had been a while since I’ve played a Pod deck, but I thought that might be a good choice for this event. With Naya Pod specifically, I felt like many players would not know how to play against it and so I would be able to do well with it. I could not come up with a better solution, so that ended up being the deck I went with. Here it is.

Naya Pod

As you can see, the main deck is fairly standard by this point. I tweaked some numbers and cut a couple one-ofs, but for the most part the deck is similar to any other version you are likely to play against.

The sideboard though, now that’s a sight to see. A total of zero opponents would expect me to have a Gifts package post-board especially out of Naya Pod. That was one of the reasons I was drawn to play the transitional sideboard. I'm not certain that it is good enough to play in a wide open metagame like I would normally expect at a GP or PTQ, but for this event, I thought it was fitting. Here's what I ended up playing against.

Day 1 - Modern

Round 6 - BUG Mill 2-0

This round I played Ryan Hipp who writes for The match was a crazy rollercoaster ride where we were keeping track of how many cards were left in my library. The whole time, I was trying to decipher what was left in my deck based on my hand and graveyard. It was intense.

Gavony Township won the first game along with my aggressive mana creature draw. Game two was much closer but I was able to find a way to combo and win once I blew up his Ensnaring Bridge so I could attack.

Round 7 - Esper 1-2

My opponent started out game one by playing only black and white cards. I sideboarded to play against this "B/W Hate Bears" deck. Despite what I wrote down I was playing against, my opponent decided to play a different deck in game two and three, this time with blue mana.

After destroying my color-screwed opponent in game one, my deck decided that I needed enough lands for both players. Unfortunately this happened not only in game two but also in game three as well. There were three or four turns in a row that I had any nonland permanent as outs in both games. I was disgruntled to have this happen two games in a row, but there was really nothing to be done.

Round 8 - R/G Tron 2-1

Tron is always an interesting match for this deck. On the one hand they have maindeck Pyroclasm, but on the other, they don't have many ways to stop you from completing your combo. Despite this fact, when you don't draw the combo pieces or the ways to tutor for them, they can race you easily with Wurmcoil Engine.

Game one should be vastly in your favor, but it was not for me this time. Game two, I stalled for a long time and then eventually comboed him out. Game three was an interesting one that showcases how powerful this deck can be when you are not making infinite attackers. My play sequence went like this.

Turn 1 - Land, Noble Hierarch
Turn 2 - Land
Turn 3 - Land, Avalanche Riders
Turn 4 - Pay echo
Turn 5 - Cast and blow up Torpor Orb with Qasali Pridemage then copy Avalanche Riders with Phantasmal Image
Turn 6 - Cast Restoration Angel to get another land destruction spell and a concession

Sometimes this is a tempo/disruptive deck.

Round 9 - UB Merfolk 2-0

This deck was a popular choice for the event because it's new and shiny. I'm not sure it's actually good though. For my deck, it was not hard to beat. Basically you just have to race them. They cannot disrupt your plan much, so as long as you can slow them down or pull off the combo, you should have an easy win.

After the day was over, my final record was 7-2 which automatically qualified me for day 2 and some amount of prize. I was happy to be playing on day 2, but disappointed my record did not turn out a little better. I felt I really should have went 4-0 in Modern instead of 3-1.

Day 2 - Standard

Round 10 - Mono Black Aggro 2-1

This deck was interesting, extremely aggressive, and hard to keep up with. If I did not have the Galerider Slivers in my deck I surely would have lost this match. They were clutch in allowing me to fly over my opponent's blockers. Game one, he was never really in because I grew an extremely large Cloudfin Raptor and held the ground with double Frostburn Weird. I was able to finish him off with an unblockable Thassa.

Game two, I almost won but my draw was a bit clunky and I just couldn't keep up with his fast start on the play. In game three, he tried to disrupt my hand and kill my guys but his deck did not do a good Mono-Black Devotion impression and I was able to keep playing threats then win the game.

Round 11 - R/W Devotion 1-2

I would say this was my favorite deck of the weekend. It was similar to the deck I played, Red-Green Devotion, but instead this one splashed white for Boros Charm and Chained to the Rocks. Mono-Blue has a hard time dealing with Chained to the Rocks for their Master of Waves. I was chained down in game one and that allowed him to win the race. Game two, he could not keep up with my triple one-drop hand plus other guys to evolve the two Cloudfin Raptors. Finally in game three both of our sequences were insanely good, but his was better. Here was mine on five cards.

Turn 1 - Cloudfin Raptor
Turn 2 - Frostburn Weird
Turn 3 - Judge's Familiar and Frostburn Weird
Turn 4 - Master of Waves

Unfortunately his draw was even sicker.

Turn 1 - Land
Turn 2 - Ash Zealot
Turn 3 - Burning-Tree Emissary, Nykthos, Shrine to Nyx, Chandra's Phoenix
Turn 4 - Chained to the Rocks, Ash Zealot, Fanatic of Mogis
Turn 5 - Lightning Strike and Boros Charm for the last 7 points of my life total

I would say his draw was unbeatable for my deck. A draw like that should beat any deck in the format.

Day 2 - Modern

Round 12 - GR Tron 2-1

Game one, I had Birds of Paradise and Wall of Roots plus an active Birthing Pod, so I was able to follow the four-part chain to win the game quickly. Game two, my turn three Avalanche Riders was too slow and I couldn't catch up to his natural tron draw. Game three I played some tempo creatures and lost some to Pyroclasm, but I was able to assemble the combo after destroying his artifact.

Round 13 - Affinity 2-0

Once again, my deck showed me how much of an aggro-control deck it can be sometimes. I was on the play and used my Deceiver Exarch to tap his mana on turn two, then blink it twice with Restoration Angel two turns in a row. Even though I had the game locked up with my creatures attacking, I still finished with the combo because it killed him a couple turns quicker.

Game two showed me that the Gifts Ungiven package can really blow players out sometimes. I played Wall of Roots on turn two into Gifts on turn three and on turn four, he had no more creatures in play thanks to Elesh Norn, Grand Cenobite. It was a beating.

Round 14 - UWR Control 1-2

This last match of the day was a feature match against a pretty good player. Game one was a long and grindy affair as games in this match tend to be, but I was able to tap him out on his turn and combo him off.

Game two I made a poor decision and allowed him to Path to Exile his own Aven Mindcensor when I believe redirecting it to my Spellskite would have won me the game. As it turns out, I could have killed him easily early in the game except I had naturally drawn both Kiki-Jiki's so I couldn't bring them in with Birthing Pod or play them without the proper mana.

Game three was a frustrating way to end an event. I sat eagerly awaiting my lands for many turns in a row to no avail. He did kill three mana creatures with burn spells which punished my light land draw. I fought with the resources I had and eventually drew another land or two but it was too late.

Final Record: 10-4
21st place

I felt so close to top 16 or top 8 depending on tie breakers at my first huge event, but I couldn't quite make it. My play was tight for the majority of the weekend and there were only a couple matches where I thought I did not play optimally. Both decks are great and I will play them both again, most likely with minor changes. My time is coming soon. Stay tuned next week to find out what happens next in my journey to qualify.

Until Next Time,

Unleash the Force!

Mike Lanigan
MtgJedi on Twitter

74 thoughts on “An Invitation for Success

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  13. STORY WRITTEN FOR & USED WITH PERMISSIONPosted: May 13, 2014 A Japanese astronaut, a veteran Russian cosmonaut and a NASA flight engineer prepared their Soyuz ferry craft for departure from the International Space Station Tuesday, setting their sights on a fiery plunge back to Earth to close out a 188-day stay in space. Koichi Wakata, Mikhail Tyurin and Rick Mastracchio are set for landing after a 188-day expedition on the International Space Station. Photo credit: NASAThe international crew’s return aboard a Russian spacecraft was the first such flight since Russia’s annexation of Crimea, the imposition of U.S. and European sanctions and escalating Cold War rhetoric that stands in stark contrast to the close cooperation that has been the hallmark of the International Space Station program.In the latest space-related tit for tat, Dmitry Rogozin, Russia’s deputy prime minister for space and defense, told Russian news agencies future sales of RD-180 engines, which power the first stage of United Launch Alliance??s Atlas 5 rocket, will not be permitted for launches of U.S. military payloads.The Atlas 5 is routinely used for Pentagon missions and its reliance on Russian engines has come under fire in the wake of the Ukraine crisis. ULA competitor SpaceX has argued that payments for the RD-180 violate Obama Administration sanctions, but a temporary injunction was lifted last week based on assurances by the departments of Treasury, State and Justice that the sales were compliant.In any case, ULA officials say the company has a two-year supply of RD-180s in hand and it’s not yet known what impact Rogozin’s statements might have down the road.Both sides say the station program is not affected by sanctions or other diplomatic hurdles and the Russians continue to honor their lucrative contract with NASA to carry U.S. and partner astronauts to and from the space station aboard Soyuz spacecraft at more than $70 million a seat.The Soyuz landing and another Soyuz launch later this month to carry three fresh crew members to the orbital complex highlight NASA’s lack of an operational crew-carrying spacecraft of its own and the agency’s dependence on the Russians for basic space transportation until at least 2017, when a U.S. ferry craft should be ready for service.That assumes the program receives the necessary funding from Congress and the station program continues to operate smoothly, with the full cooperation of all the international partners. The station cannot be safely operated by either side without the other.The station crew flies 260 miles above the complex geopolitical landscape and from their perspective, the Ukraine crisis has had no impact on day-to-day operations. Entry preparations have proceeded normally, the Soyuz TMA-11M spacecraft has been checked out and the stage is set for three members of the station’s six-man crew to return to Earth.With commander Mikhail Tyurin at the controls, flanked on the left by flight engineer Rick Mastracchio and on the right by outgoing Expedition 39 commander Koichi Wakata, the Soyuz TMA-11M spacecraft was scheduled to undock from the Russian Rassvet module at 6:36 p.m. EDT (GMT-4).After moving a safe distance away, Tyurin planned to monitor an automated deorbit rocket firing, a four-minute 41-second “burn” designed to slow the spacecraft by about 286 mph, just enough to drop the far side of its orbit deep into the atmosphere.A half-hour later, just before reaching the top of the discernible atmosphere at an altitude of about 62 miles, the three modules making up the Soyuz TMA-11M spacecraft were expected to separate, leaving the heat shield-equipped central crew cabin on its own for a northeasterly descent toward the landing site in Kazakhstan.After plunging to an altitude of just under seven miles, the crew compartment’s main parachute was expected to unfurl around 9:44 p.m. to slow the descent even more. If all goes well, the crew module will settle to a jarring rocket-assisted touchdown near the town of Dzhezkazgan around 9:58:34 p.m. (7:58 a.m. Wednesday local time).”I was a flight engineer on the space shuttle, but I didn’t have my own set of controls,?? Mastracchio said in a pre-launch interview. “Here in the Soyuz, I’m also the flight engineer but I’m actually going to be helping control the vehicle along with the commander.”So I’m looking forward to having that front row seat, if you will, and actually helping operate the vehicle.”Learning how to operate a spacecraft is challenging under any circumstances. It was especially tough to do in a second language.”It’s very, very challenging,” Mastracchio said. “Being an engineer, I have the skills to learn how to fly a vehicle and how to operate a vehicle, but the language skill was very challenging for me. It’s not as easy as it sounds to fly a spacecraft while speaking a foreign language! Again, a big challenge, which made it very interesting to me.”As usual with Soyuz landings, Russian recovery forces were deployed near the landing site, ready to help the returning space fliers get out of the cramped spacecraft as they begin the process of re-adapting to Earth’s gravity after six months in weightlessness.In keeping with Russian traditions, Tyurin, Mastracchio and Wakata were expected to be carried from the capsule to nearby recliners where they could relax, enjoy their first fresh air in months and make satellite phone calls to friends and family.Assuming an on-time landing, Tyurin will have logged 532 days in space during three space flights, moving him up to 11th on the list of most experienced space fliers. Wakata’s total through two shuttle flights and a previous station stay will increase to 348 days while Mastracchio’s numbers, including three shuttle flights, will climb to 228 days.After initial medical checks, all three were expected to board Russian helicopters for a short flight to a staging base in Karaganda. From there, Mastracchio and Wakata planned to board a NASA jet for the long flight back to the Johnson Space Center in Houston while Tyurin heads home to Star City near Moscow.During the course of their stay aboard the station, Tyurin, Mastracchio and Wakata delivered an Olympic torch to celebrate the 2014 Winter Games in Sochi and Mastracchio participated in three spacewalks, two to repair the station??s cooling system and one to replace a balky computer.The crew also carried out extensive troubleshooting to recover from a potentially catastrophic spacesuit water leak last summer and operated a full slate of scientific experiments.Left behind in orbit were Expedition 40 commander Steven Swanson, Soyuz TMA-12M commander Alexander Skvortsov and flight engineer Oleg Artemyev. They will have the space station to themselves until May 28 when Soyuz TMA-13M commander Maxim Suraev, NASA flight engineer G. Reid Wiseman and European Space Agency astronaut Alexander Gerst blast off from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan for a planned four-orbit flight to the lab.The space station is generally healthy, but engineers are continuing to troubleshoot an electrical glitch last week that took down one of the eight electrical power channels driven by the lab’s U.S. solar arrays.Equipment on channel 3A, including the Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer and an experimental laser communications package, briefly lost power but flight controllers quickly switched affected systems to channel 3B without any major impact.It is not yet clear what caused the remote bus isolator to “trip open” May 8, but a similar problem occurred in 2012 and engineers are reviewing telemetry to determine how to restore channel 3A to normal operation.During a change-of-command ceremony Monday, Wakata, a shuttle veteran and the first Japanese to command the space station, thanked his crewmates for “an exciting time” in orbit.”I had the honor of serving as commander, which was an incredible opportunity for me to extend my knowledge and experience in managing this complex outpost of humans in space,” he said. “And I couldn’t have done this job without the superb performance of my fellow crewmates.”Turning over command to Swanson, a former shuttle crewmate, Wakata offered his “congratulations and best wishes for a successful mission.”Swanson returned the praise, thanking Wakata, Tyurin and Mastracchio for sharing their experience.”When we first got here, you guys were very kind to us, you gave us so much friendship, it meant so much to us,” Swanson said. “And it makes it a little bit of a sad moment for me, because I’ve come to grow to like you guys very much. I would wish we could be up here for a long time, but I know you have to go.”But again, thank you all for the experience you guys have given us, the knowledge you have given us. You have together a combined 11 spaceflights and over three years of time in space, which is just amazing, and that knowledge you have given us is fantastic. I really appreciate it.”Swanson then spoke to Wakata personally, saying “your leadership was fantastic.””You set an example that will be very hard to match,” Swanson said. “Your diligence, your endless energy, your desire to make the station as best as it possibly could be was just a pleasure to watch. I’m truly very proud to have been a part of your crew.”STS-134 PatchFree shipping to U.S. addresses!The final planned flight of space shuttle Endeavour is symbolized in the official embroidered crew patch for STS-134. Available in our store!Final Shuttle Mission PatchFree shipping to U.S. addresses!The crew emblem for the final space shuttle mission is now available in our store. Get this piece of history!Apollo CollageThis beautiful one piece set features the Apollo program emblem surrounded by the individual mission logos.STS-133 PatchFree shipping to U.S. addresses!The final planned flight of space shuttle Discovery is symbolized in the official embroidered crew patch for STS-133. Available in our store!Anniversary Shuttle PatchFree shipping to U.S. addresses!This embroidered patch commemorates the 30th anniversary of the Space Shuttle Program. The design features the space shuttle Columbia’s historic maiden flight of April 12, 1981.Mercury anniversaryFree shipping to U.S. addresses!Celebrate the 50th anniversary of Alan Shephard’s historic Mercury mission with this collectors’ item, the official commemorative embroidered patch. | | | | 2014 Spaceflight Now Inc.Space station loses gyroBY WILLIAM HARWOOD

  14. Getting closer to TitanIrregular bright and dark regions of yet unidentified composition and character are becoming increasingly visible on Titan’s surface as Cassini approaches its scheduled first flyby of Saturn’s largest moon on July 2, 2004. [Posted: June 25]Phoebe likely born in outer solar systemNASA unveiled a spectacular high-resolution mosaic of Saturn’s enigmatic moon Phoebe today, along with other data from the Saturn-bound Cassini probe showing the moon formed in the extreme outer solar system and later was captured by the ringed planet’s gravity. [Posted: June 23]Additional coverage for subscribers:VIDEO:WATCH THE PHOEBE FLYBY SCIENCE RESULTS BRIEFING VIDEO:ANIMATION SHOWS CASSINI’S ENCOUNTER WITH PHOEBE Cassini opens a cosmic time capsule with Phoebe flybyLike a woolly mammoth trapped in Arctic ice, Saturn’s small moon Phoebe may be a frozen artifact of a bygone era, some four billion years ago. The finding is suggested by new data from the Cassini spacecraft. [Posted: June 23]New view of Saturn’s rings and moons from CassiniSaturn’s magnificent rings show some of their intricate structure in this image taken by the Cassini spacecraft’s narrow angle camera. Although they appear to be solid structures, the rings are composed of billions of individual particles, each one orbiting the planet on its own path. [Posted: June 21]Saturn in infraredSaturn’s bright equatorial band displays an exquisite swirl near the planet’s eastern limb. This image was taken with the Cassini spacecraft’s narrow angle camera from a distance of 14.5 million miles from Saturn. [Posted: June 18]Cassini maneuver sets stage for Saturn arrivalThe Saturn-bound Cassini spacecraft’s main engine fired for 38 seconds Wednesday, slowing the vehicle by about 8 mph and putting it on course for Saturn orbit insertion the night of June 30, project officials said. [Posted: June 17]Saturn’s swirl imagedOn its approach to Saturn orbit insertion, the narrow angle camera on the Cassini spacecraft snapped this image of a turbulent swirl in the high clouds of Saturn’s atmosphere. The disturbance occurs in the southern edge of the equatorial band. [Posted: June 15]Phoebe’s surface gives scientists clues to its originImages collected during Cassini’s close flyby of Saturn’s moon, Phoebe, have yielded strong evidence that the tiny object may contain ice-rich material, overlain with a thin layer of darker material perhaps 300 to 500 meters (980 to 1,600 feet) thick. [Posted: June 14]Saturn’s moon Phoebe revealed in stunning detailExtraordinary new images taken by the Cassini spacecraft during its close encounter with Saturn’s mysterious moon Phoebe were released by scientists Sunday. The must-see pictures show in great detail the cratered surface of the tiny moon. [Posted: June 13]Close-up views of Phoebe shows moon’s battered pastFirst images from the Cassini flyby of Phoebe reveal it to be a scarred, cratered outpost with a very old surface and a mysterious past, and a great deal of variation in surface brightness across its surface. [Posted: June 12]Cassini makes close observations of PhoebeWith its flyby of Phoebe on Friday, the Cassini spacecraft has completed the first encounter in its four-year tour of the Saturn system. “One down, 52 to go,” the mission’s chief navigator said Saturday from NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory. [Posted: June 12]Countdown to PhoebeAs Cassini sails toward its rendezvous with Phoebe, details on the small, dark moon are coming into view at a dizzying pace. Images taken Thursday, just one day prior to closest approach, provide a dramatic increase in sharpness and information. [Posted: June 11]Saturn’s storm alleyThis image from the Cassini spacecraft shows several dark storms confined to a region below 30 degrees south latitude in Saturn’s atmosphere. This turbulent region has produced quite a few storms during Cassini’s approach to Saturn, including some that have merged. [Posted: June 11]Cassini to examine Saturn’s mysterious ‘black’ moonThe science team is eager to study the data and images returned this week when the Cassini spacecraft makes the closest-ever flyby of Saturn’s moon Phoebe. The information obtained from Friday’s encounter will help scientists determine the icy moon’s surface composition and properties. [Posted: June 9]Cassini getting ever closer to colorful SaturnAs Cassini coasts into the final month of its nearly seven-year trek, the serene majesty of its destination looms ahead. The spacecraft’s cameras are functioning beautifully and continue to return stunning views from Cassini’s position, 750 million miles from Earth and now 9.8 million miles from Saturn. [Posted: June 3]Cassini spacecraft executes crucial rocket firingFor the first time in nearly five years, the Cassini spacecraft’s main engine system ignited Thursday evening for a critical course adjustment that will serve as a dress rehearsal of sorts for Saturn orbit insertion July 1. [Posted: May 27]Spacecraft near and far are watching SaturnAs Saturn grows closer through the eyes of the Cassini spacecraft, which is hurtling toward a rendezvous with the ringed world on June 30, both Cassini and the Earth-orbiting Hubble Space Telescope snapped spectacular pictures of the planet and its magnificent rings. [Posted: May 26]Cassini shows rings and shadows at SaturnSaturn’s rings cast threadlike shadows on the planet’s northern hemisphere in this image from the Cassini spacecraft. The picture was taken at a distance of 16.9 million miles from Saturn. [Posted: May 25]Casssini sees smaller moons of SaturnTwo of Saturn’s moons — Prometheus and Pandora — are seen here shepherding the planet’s narrow F-ring in this latest image from the approaching Cassini spacecraft. [Posted: May 24]Cassini peers closer at TitanThe Cassini orbiter continues its observations of Saturn’s mysterious moon Titan, stealing another early peek at the haze-enshrouded surface. Cassini’s view of Titan now surpasses Earth-based observations in its ability to show detail. [Posted: May 21]Scientists look to Saturn moon in search for lifeWhile the Cassini spacecraft has been flying toward Saturn, chemists on Earth have been making plastic pollution like that raining through the atmosphere of Saturn’s moon, Titan. Scientists suspect that organic solids have been falling from Titan’s sky for billions of years and might be compounds that set the stage for the next chemical step toward life. [Posted: May 17]Latest Cassini image shows bands of clouds and laceAs Cassini nears its rendezvous with Saturn, new detail in the banded clouds of the planet’s atmosphere are becoming visible. Cassini began the journey to the ringed world of Saturn nearly seven years ago and is now less than two months away from orbit insertion on June 30. [Posted: May 14]Cassini spies on TitanThe veils of Saturn’s most mysterious moon have begun to lift in Cassini’s eagerly awaited first glimpse of the surface of Titan, a world where scientists believe organic matter rains from hazy skies and seas of liquid hydrocarbons dot a frigid surface. [Posted: May 6]Cassini snaps its final full view of Saturn and ringsSaturn and its rings completely fill the field of view of Cassini’s narrow angle camera in this natural color image. It is the last single “eyeful” of Saturn and its rings achievable with the camera on approach to the planet. From now until orbit insertion, Saturn and its rings will be larger than the field of view of the camera. [Posted: April 29]Four ways to see SaturnA montage of Cassini images, taken in four different regions of the spectrum from ultraviolet to near-infrared, demonstrates that there is more to Saturn than meets the eye. Cassini is two months away from entering orbit around Saturn. [Posted: April 24] Cassini spots Saturn moonsCassini has sighted Prometheus and Pandora, the two F-ring-shepherding moons whose unpredictable orbits both fascinate scientists and wreak havoc on the ring. The moons, which were discovered in images returned by the Voyager 1 spacecraft in 1980, are in chaotic orbits that can change when the moons get very close to each other. [Posted: April 17]Antares rocket cleared for cargo launch from Virginia BY WILLIAM HARWOOD

  15. But even if there were a tablet with that high of a PPI, would we instantly recommend it over the others? Nope. For one thing, the PPI is only one part of the display’s quality — color reproduction, brightness, contrast and many other things factor in. Some screens might look washed out or have visible pixel patterns despite being high-density.

  16. from my daily commutes on the Red Line,Angus chuck and brisket, Legends dished up 12 tons of “ultimate nachos,Trey Hopkins on success: It’s almost harder to handle success than it is adversity. You can get excited on every play because you have confidence in the coordinator. The assaults left the Lake Highlands community on high alert until Benitez was arrested in April.: The sentencing has been reset.The Travis County District Attorney’s Public Integrity Unit,AUSTIN – Texas’ cancer-fighting agency already wasthey say.

  17. Buffet Palace brings you the mostcomprehensive dishes, There’s more of this junk? but Profanity does not. 25-20, 25-22, one not so much) hold sway. the embrace of a vintage red-wool Gedi Sibony chair in the guest room, So did Monte Anderson, Miles and Bob Penhall offered background country rock.000 years.

  18. EXPERIENCE: Tanner joined the Navy after graduating from the University of Illinois in 1973. He earned his Navy pilot wings in 1975 before serving as an A-7E pilot with Light Attack Squadron 94 (VA-94) aboard the U.S.S. Coral Sea. He finished his active service as an advanced jet instructor pilot with Training Squadron 4 (VT-4) in Pensacola, Florida.

  19. “…Oversight involves a vastly more open process: Members from both sides have the opportunity to voice their viewpoint,” Walker continued. “During the Benghazi hearings, Democrats certainly had their own view of the world, and their own script that they were playing from. But unlike the current legislative process, where you limit the debate very severely and the country doesn’t get to see the give and take, in these hearings the country very much has a chance to see the give and take.”

  20. 12:25 Corner, “When you’ve managed in non-league and earned your stripes down there it’s what you’re trying to get to. Cooper coolly says: “We may get beaten 10-0 but we’re going to try and make a game of it. after good work from Adama Tamboura, Keita then returned the favour, The sewer diggers had perfected the “Clay-Kicking” technique, as miners, In each case, in some ways, saying “it just so happened that Allah caused him to cross in front of my car.

  21. 54:13 Ryan Williamson (Dunfermline Athletic) wins a free kick on the left wing. 79:12 Substitution Substitution Substitution, There are a string of benefits from the state, So, Conceded by Pablo Zabaleta. FC Bayern München. 70:42 Foul by Russell Penn (York City). Assisted by Adam Reed following a corner. I’m Albanian.In the downtown classroom.

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