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Scientists spot new ring around Saturn
AP on Yahoo ^ | 9/20/06 | AP

Posted on 09/20/2006 5:00:55 PM PDT by NormsRevenge

LOS ANGELES - Saturn's majestic ring system, visible through backyard telescopes, just got a little more crowded with the discovery of a faint, new ring encircling the giant planet, scientists said Tuesday.

The international Cassini spacecraft beamed back images this week showing the new ring, located inside the outermost E ring.

The new ring crosses the orbits of the Saturn moons Janus and Epimetheus, leading scientists to believe tiny particles from the lunar surfaces gave rise to the ring.

Saturn has seven major rings named A through G, although they are not arrayed in alphabetical order. The planet has about a half dozen smaller, unnamed arcs, but the latest discovery is unique because it is the farthest, said Jeff Cuzzi, a NASA planetary ring expert on the Cassini mission.

Scientists are interested in Saturn's rings because they are a model of the disk of gas and dust that initially surrounded the sun. Studying them could yield important clues about how the planets formed from that disk 4.5 billion years ago.

Cassini was able to photograph the new ring Sunday when the sun passed directly behind Saturn, providing a bright backlight. Researchers are now figuring out its size and composition, but it is likely the new ring is made of water ice particles.

The $3.3 billion Cassini mission, funded by NASA and the European and Italian space agencies, was launched in 1997. Cassini is managed by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena.


TOPICS: Astronomy; Science
KEYWORDS: cassini; newring; saturn; scientists

This image taken by NASA's Cassini spacecraft shows a new diffuse ring of the planet Saturn, coincident with the orbits of Saturn's moon's Janus and Epimetheus, released by NASA September 19, 2006. REUTERS/NASA/JPL/Space Science Institute/Handout


1 posted on 09/20/2006 5:00:55 PM PDT by NormsRevenge
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To: NormsRevenge

On the Net:

Cassini mission: http://www.nasa.gov/cassini


2 posted on 09/20/2006 5:01:18 PM PDT by NormsRevenge (Semper Fi ......Help the "Pendleton 8' and families -- http://www.freerepublic.com/~normsrevenge/)
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To: NormsRevenge
I thought this was a great photo from the other day.

Image Hosted by ImageShack.us
3 posted on 09/20/2006 5:06:45 PM PDT by cripplecreek (If stupidity got us into this mess, then why can't it get us out?)
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To: NormsRevenge; All
And please, please, everybody - ixnay on the 'Klingons around Uranus' jokes and stay on topic, OK? LOL


4 posted on 09/20/2006 5:16:36 PM PDT by Viking2002 (Islam is to Western Civilization what ticks are to a dog.)
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To: Viking2002
And please, please, everybody - ixnay on the 'Klingons around Uranus' jokes and stay on topic, OK? LOL

LOL! I was going to say, "what, no rings around Uranus?" :D

5 posted on 09/20/2006 5:20:56 PM PDT by Echo Talon
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To: NormsRevenge

Universe's biggest LP.


6 posted on 09/20/2006 5:23:34 PM PDT by Extremely Extreme Extremist
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To: KevinDavis

space ping?


7 posted on 09/20/2006 5:26:26 PM PDT by trashcanbred (Anti-social and anti-socialist)
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To: NormsRevenge

How fair is that? Saturn gets a new ring and Pluto is downgraded from "planet" to "big hunk of rock."


8 posted on 09/20/2006 5:28:34 PM PDT by madison10
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To: madison10

Saturn's a diva its just showing off. :)


9 posted on 09/20/2006 5:32:59 PM PDT by Echo Talon
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To: madison10
How fair is that? Saturn gets a new ring and Pluto is downgraded from "planet" to "big hunk of rock."

They're just setting us up for the big disappointment a few years from now when the new ring is downgraded to "just a few dots of debris orbiting Saturn" :)

10 posted on 09/20/2006 5:41:38 PM PDT by Mr_Moonlight
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To: madison10

If there happened to be life on Jupiter or one of the other gas giants, I wonder if they would say Earth was too small to be a planet?


11 posted on 09/20/2006 5:54:56 PM PDT by trashcanbred (Anti-social and anti-socialist)
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To: trashcanbred

We'd nuke em.


12 posted on 09/20/2006 10:42:20 PM PDT by jwh_Denver (I can't beat em but I ain't joining them either.)
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To: 75thOVI; AndrewC; Avoiding_Sulla; BenLurkin; Berosus; CGVet58; chilepepper; ckilmer; demlosers; ...
How nice, Saturn got engaged. :')

· Catastrophism ping list · join · view topics · view or post blog · bookmark ·

13 posted on 09/21/2006 6:28:27 AM PDT by SunkenCiv (updated my FR profile on Saturday, September 16, 2006. https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/)
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