Skip to comments.A remarkable Cassini picture: Hyperion (moon of Saturn)
Posted on 09/30/2005 11:29:53 AM PDT by cogitator
Yet more proof that NASA can't do anything right....
Wholly sh*t. Beyond kewl.
Is that Karl Rove's brain?
That's a moon ? Looks like small chunk of rock pockmarked with asteroid impact craters. Doesn't even look round ??
** astrogeology ping **
Hyperion was always known not to be round, but there has never been a high resolution picture until now.
Looks more like howard deans brain ....!
Looks like it took a huge hit right in the kisser some time ago.
I sure am glad we have an atmosphere. That would suck if that many asteroids managed to smash into us.....
This stunning false-color view of Saturn's moon Hyperion reveals crisp details across the strange, tumbling moon's surface. Differences in color could represent differences in the composition of surface materials. The view was obtained during Cassini's close flyby on Sept. 26, 2005.
Hyperion has a notably reddish tint when viewed in natural color. The red color was toned down in this false-color view, and the other hues were enhanced, in order to make more subtle color variations across Hyperion's surface more apparent.
Images taken using infrared, green and ultraviolet spectral filters were combined to create this view. The images were taken with the Cassini spacecraft's narrow-angle camera at a distance of approximately 62,000 kilometers (38,500 miles) from Hyperion and at a Sun-Hyperion-spacecraft, or phase, angle of 52 degrees. The image scale is 362 meters (1,200 feet) per pixel.
The Cassini-Huygens mission is a cooperative project of NASA, the European Space Agency and the Italian Space Agency. The Jet Propulsion Laboratory, a division of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, manages the mission for NASA's Science Mission Directorate, Washington, D.C. The Cassini orbiter and its two onboard cameras were designed, developed and assembled at JPL. The imaging operations center is based at the Space Science Institute in Boulder, Colo. For more information about the Cassini-Huygens mission visit http://saturn.jpl.nasa.gov . The Cassini imaging team homepage is at http://ciclops.org .
Credit: NASA/JPL/Space Science Institute
Looks like this rock took a few big hits in the passed.
Generally speaking, celestial bodies have to exceed a certain size before they become round beneath the force of their own gravity.
Hyperion is too small for this process to occur.
A gigantic ultrafrozen snowball, blasted by a billion asteroid/comet hits? If so it would be a great source of fuel for long voyages to the outer solar system and beyond.
That is really incredible! Thanks for posting it.
It's not round -- in fact, its rotation is chaotic, meaning that it doesn't rotate around a defined spin axis.
Found this on a fact sheet:
Hyperion is one of Saturn's smaller satellites and its elliptical orbit lies between that of Titan and Iapetus. Hyperion's low density indicates that the satellite is mainly composed of water-ice with a small amount of rocky material. The surface is covered with a darker material causing Hyperion to have a lower albedo compared to other icy moons.
Hyperion's shape is very irregular and it has been suggested that the satellite once was part of a larger object that was fractured by an impact in the distant past. Hyperion's surface also shows signs of heavy cratering with the largest crater approximately 120 km in diameter.
The orientation of Hyperion's axis of rotation is chaotic and unpredictable. The cause for the chaotic rotation could be due to the proximity of the large moon Titan, the ellipticity of Hyperions orbit and the 3:4 resonance between the orbital period of Titan and Hyperion.
An amazing mission with super success. As that moon cooled, the surface was under heavy meteor bombardment. Wow, hard to even try and count them. I continue to watch the Cassini site with amazement.
Nah - but it is...Bush's fault!
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