Keyword: moons

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  • Did A Giant Impact Create The Two Faces Of Mars?

    03/15/2007 2:14:24 PM PDT · by blam · 32 replies · 855+ views
    New Scientist ^ | 3-15-2007 | David Shiga
    Did a giant impact create the two faces of Mars? 16:29 15 March 2007 news service David Shiga, Houston Mars's northern hemisphere is lower in elevation – by about 5 kilometres – than its southern hemisphere (see image below). This coloured topographical map shows low elevations in blue and high elevations in yellow and red. The map is centred on a latitude of 55° north (Illustration: Mike Caplinger/MSSS) Mars's southern hemisphere is higher and more heavily cratered than the northern hemisphere, suggesting it is older terrain. The two low elevations (blue) in this map, which is centred on the...
  • Monster volcano gave Mars extreme makeover: study

    03/03/2016 11:08:06 AM PST · by BenLurkin · 17 replies ^ | March 2, 2016 by | Laurence Coustal, Marlowe Hood
    A volcano on Mars half the size of France spewed so much lava 3.5 billion years ago that the weight displaced the Red Planet's outer layers, according to a study released Wednesday. Mars' original north and south poles, in other words, are no longer where they once were. The findings explain the unexpected location of dry river beds and underground reservoirs of water ice, as well as other Martian mysteries that have long perplexed scientists, the lead researcher told AFP. "If a similar shift happened on Earth, Paris would be in the Polar Circle," said Sylvain Bouley, a geomorphologist at...
  • Red Planet's Ancient Equator Located

    04/24/2005 8:18:25 PM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 64 replies · 2,163+ views
    Scientific American (online) ^ | April 20, 2005 | Sarah Graham
    Jafar Arkani-Hamed of McGill University discovered that five impact basins--dubbed Argyre, Hellas, Isidis, Thaumasia and Utopia--form an arclike pattern on the Martian surface. Three of the basins are well-preserved and remain visible today. The locations of the other two, in contrast, were inferred from measurements of anomalies in the planet's gravitational field... a single source--most likely an asteroid that was initially circling the sun in the same plane as Mars--created all five craters. At one point the asteroid passed close to the Red Planet... and was broken apart by the force of the planet's gravity. The resulting five pieces subsequently...
  • New Theory: Catastrophe Created Mars' Moons

    07/29/2003 8:56:47 AM PDT · by RightWhale · 62 replies · 1,837+ views ^ | 29 Jul 03 | Leonard David
    New Theory: Catastrophe Created Mars' Moons By Leonard David Senior Space Writer posted: 07:00 am ET 29 July 2003 PASADENA, California – The two moons of Mars – Phobos and Deimos – could be the byproducts of a breakup of a huge moon that once circled the red planet, according to a new theory. The capture of a large Martian satellite may have taken place during or shortly after the formation of the planet, with Phobos and Deimos now the surviving remnants. Origin of the two moons presents a longstanding puzzle to which one researcher proposed the new solution at...
  • Long-Destroyed Fifth Planet May Have Caused Lunar Cataclysm, Researchers Say

    03/25/2002 2:42:10 PM PST · by vannrox · 154 replies · 4,757+ views
    SPACE dot COM ^ | 18 March 2002 ,posted: 03:00 pm ET | By Leonard David, Senior Space Writer
    Asteroid Vesta: The 10th Planet? Discovery Brightens Odds of Finding Another Pluto Nemesis: The Million Dollar Question HOUSTON, TEXAS -- Our solar system may have had a fifth terrestrial planet, one that was swallowed up by the Sun. But before it was destroyed, the now missing-in-action world made a mess of things. Space scientists John Chambers and Jack Lissauer of NASA's Ames Research Center hypothesize that along with Mercury, Venus, Earth, and Mars -- the terrestrial, rocky planets -- there was a fifth terrestrial world, likely just outside of Mars's orbit and before the inner asteroid belt. Moreover, Planet V...
  • Red Planet Impact: Huge Moons May Have Crashed Into Mars

    07/04/2016 6:40:49 PM PDT · by BenLurkin · 11 replies ^ | July 4, 2016 11:01am ET | Charles Q. Choi
    Phobos and Deimos are both small for moons — about 14 and 7.7 miles (22.5 and 12.4 kilometers) wide, respectively — and sort of potato-shaped. Compared to other satellites in the solar system, they look more like asteroids. As a result, astronomers previously hypothesized that these moons were asteroids captured by Mars' gravitational pull. ...previous research suggested that Phobos and Deimos would have relatively irregular orbits. In reality, these moons have nearly circular orbits positioned near the Martian equator. ... huge impact that previous research suggested created the gigantic Borealis basin in the northern lowlands of Mars, which covers two-fifths...
  • Interstellar Comparisons (terraforming moons and planets in the solar system)

    07/03/2016 10:42:45 PM PDT · by LibWhacker · 13 replies
    Crowl Space ^ | 6/19/16 | Adam Crowl
    By 2025 Elon Musk believes SpaceX can get us to Mars – a journey of about 500 million kilometres, needing a speed of over 100,000 km/h. By comparison travelling to the stars within a human lifetime via the known laws of physics requires energies millions of times more potent than that budget-price trip to Mars. In our energy hungry modern world the prospect seems fanciful, yet we are surrounded by energies and forces of comparable scale. By taming those forces we will be able to launch forth towards the stars, save our civilization and extend the reach of our biosphere....
  • New Horizons spots Pluto’s smaller moons for the first time

    02/18/2015 1:24:13 PM PST · by BenLurkin · 11 replies ^ | Rachel Feltman
    It's not exactly a clean shot, but it's certainly a timely one: 85 years to the day after Pluto's discovery, NASA has released fresh images from New Horizons that show two of its smaller moons. The long-exposure images, which were taken between Jan. 27 and Feb. 8 from a distance of 125 to 115 million miles, show Hydra and Nix -- moons too small to show up in previous shots. Hydra is enclosed in a yellow diamond with Nix in orange. The image on the right has been specially processed to reduce the center glare, a result of the over-exposure...
  • Mystery object in Saturn's ring may be a new baby moon: Peggy

    04/16/2014 1:38:33 PM PDT · by BenLurkin · 31 replies
    L A Times ^ | April 15, 2014, 6:30 a.m. | By Karen Kaplan
    The moons that orbit Saturn may be increasing by one -- an icy, pint-sized object that astronomers have named “Peggy.” NASA’s Cassini spacecraft has spotted evidence that a mysterious object measuring perhaps half a mile across is disturbing the outer edge of Saturn’s large, bright A ring. The object’s gravity seems to have roughed up the ring’s usually smooth profile. As a result, a stretch of the A ring that measures 750 miles long and 6 miles wide is now about 20% brighter than it would typically appear. The fuzzy blob on the A ring’s edge was imaged by Cassini’s...
  • 2 Pluto Moons in Need of Devilish Names

    02/12/2013 11:05:53 AM PST · by BenLurkin · 62 replies
    ap ^ | Feb 11, 2013 1:03 PM CST
    Astronomers announced a contest today to name the two itty-bitty moons of Pluto discovered over the past two years. Three Pluto moons already have names associated with Hades and the underworld: Charon, the ferryman of Hades; the half-human, half-fish spirit Nix; and the multi-headed monster Hydra. The two unnamed moons need similarly shady references. Right now, they go by the bland titles of P4 and P5. They're no more than 15 to 20 miles across. Online voting will last two weeks. Twelve choices are available at,
  • Hubble Telescope Spies Fifth Moon Around Pluto

    07/11/2012 4:48:24 PM PDT · by BenLurkin · 19 replies
    AP) ^ | July 11, 2012 10:30 AM
    LOS ANGELES (AP) — There’s something lurking around distant and icy dwarf planet Pluto: a fifth moon. A team of scientists using the Hubble Space Telescope said Wednesday they have discovered the tiniest moon yet around Pluto. That brings the number of known moons to five. The mini-moon is estimated to be 6 to 15 miles across, smaller than the one that scientists spotted last year, which is 8 to 21 miles wide. Pluto’s largest moon, Charon, is about 650 miles across. Until the newly found moon gets a name, it will be known as P5.
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- Jupiter's Rings Revealed

    06/17/2012 8:39:38 PM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 13 replies
    NASA ^ | June 17, 2012 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: Why does Jupiter have rings? Jupiter's rings were discovered in 1979 by the passing Voyager 1 spacecraft, but their origin was a mystery. Data from the Galileo spacecraft that orbited Jupiter from 1995 to 2003 later confirmed that these rings were created by meteoroid impacts on small nearby moons. As a small meteoroid strikes tiny Adrastea, for example, it will bore into the moon, vaporize, and explode dirt and dust off into a Jovian orbit. Pictured above is an eclipse of the Sun by Jupiter, as viewed from Galileo. Small dust particles high in Jupiter's atmosphere, as well as...
  • Super-Earths give theorists a super headache

    12/17/2011 4:48:48 PM PST · by SunkenCiv · 26 replies
    Nature ^ | Tuesday, December 13, 2011 | Eric Hand
    NASA's Kepler space telescope... has identified 2,326 candidate planets, nearly doubling its haul since February. But what has puzzled observers and theorists so far is the high proportion of planets -- roughly one-third to one-half -- that are bigger than Earth but smaller than Neptune... Their very existence upsets conventional models of planetary formation and, furthermore, most of them are in tight orbits around their host star, precisely where the modellers say they shouldn't be. "It poses a challenge," says Douglas Lin, a planet-formation modeller and director of the Kavli Institute for Astronomy and Astrophysics at Peking University in Beijing,...
  • Incredible picture of Saturn that runs rings around all the others

    09/07/2011 4:40:19 PM PDT · by EveningStar · 49 replies
    The Daily Mail ^ | September 7, 2011 | Ted Thornhill
    There have been some amazing photographs taken of Saturn over the years, but none quite like this.
  • Blackest Planet Ever Found, Absorbs Nearly 100% of Light That Reaches It

    08/12/2011 1:25:13 PM PDT · by Red Badger · 42 replies
    Popular Science ^ | Posted 08.12.2011 at 10:11 am | By Clay Dillow
    Kepler has found the darkest known planet in universe--a Jupiter-sized exoplanet some 750 light-years away that is so black that it reflects just one percent of the light that reaches it. TrES-2b is so black that it’s darker than coal, or any other planet or moon that we’ve yet discovered. It’s less reflective than black acrylic paint. To summarize: it’s really, really black. But TrES-2b is not completely black. It emits an extremely faint red glow, like that of a hot ember. And it turns out that heat is the main culprit behind this darkest of dark planets. TrES-2b orbits...
  • Astronomers Predict That Pluto Has A Ring

    08/08/2011 6:20:20 AM PDT · by Red Badger · 21 replies
    MIT Technology Review ^ | 08-08-2011 | Staff
    Dust from Pluto's satellites ought to form a faint ring around the dwarf planet, according to new calculations Until recently, the only ring in the Solar System was Saturn's. But in 1960s and 70s, astronomers discovered rings around Uranus and Neptune. Meanwhile, the Voyager 1spacecraft sent back images of Jupiter's ring. To be sure, these rings are much less impressive than Saturn's but the implications are clear: rings seem much more common than astronomers once thought. Perhaps they are even the norm. And that raises an interesting question: could Pluto possibly have a ring? The observational evidence is that Pluto...
  • Hubble Discovers a New Moon Around Pluto

    07/20/2011 3:23:56 PM PDT · by MikeD · 26 replies ^ | July 20, 2011 | Tony Phillips
    Astronomers using the Hubble Space Telescope have discovered a fourth moon orbiting the icy dwarf planet Pluto. The tiny, new satellite – temporarily designated P4 -- popped up in a Hubble survey searching for rings around the dwarf planet. The new moon is the smallest discovered around Pluto. It has an estimated diameter of 8 to 21 miles (13 to 34 km). By comparison, Charon, Pluto's largest moon, is 648 miles (1,043 km) across, and the other moons, Nix and Hydra, are in the range of 20 to 70 miles in diameter (32 to 113 km). "I find it remarkable...
  • NASA's Hubble Discovers Another Moon Around Pluto

    07/20/2011 8:14:18 AM PDT · by Red Badger · 34 replies ^ | 7/20/2011 9:00 AM EDT | Staff
    Astronomers using the Hubble Space Telescope discovered a fourth moon orbiting the icy dwarf planet Pluto. The tiny, new satellite -- temporarily designated P4 -- was uncovered in a Hubble survey searching for rings around the dwarf planet. The new moon is the smallest discovered around Pluto. It has an estimated diameter of 8 to 21 miles (13 to 34 km). By comparison, Charon, Pluto's largest moon, is 648 miles (1,043 km) across, and the other moons, Nix and Hydra, are in the range of 20 to 70 miles in diameter (32 to 113 km). "I find it remarkable that...
  • What's that weird thing around Saturn's second-largest moon? (Rhea)

    08/01/2010 12:29:26 PM PDT · by LibWhacker · 23 replies · 4+ views
    CSMonitor | UniverseToday ^ | 7/29/10 | Nancy Atkinson
    There is something around the moon of Rhea. It's not a ring, and it sure is weird, say researchers.Back in 2005, a suite of six instruments on the Cassini spacecraft detected what was thought to be an extensive debris disk around Saturn's moon Rhea, and while there was no visible evidence, researchers thought that perhaps there was a diffuse ring around the moon. This would have been the first ring ever found around a moon. New observations, however, have nixed the idea of a ring, but there's still something around Rhea that is causing a strange, symmetrical structure in the...
  • What Earth Would Look Like With Rings Like Saturn

    12/18/2009 12:24:46 PM PST · by Maceman · 63 replies · 2,633+ views
    YouTube ^ | November 19, 2009 | Roy Prol
    What the rings would look like from different cities and latitudes across the world. It's interesting to imagine how it would effect culture throughout time. It would have influenced religion, mythology, navigation, etc.. Creator - Roy Prol SONG- Schubert's Ave Maria Sung by Barbara Bonney
  • NASA Discovers A Ring Around The Solar System

    10/18/2009 9:05:17 PM PDT · by Defiant · 45 replies · 3,624+ views
    NPR ^ | October 18, 2009 | unknown
    NASA scientists have discovered a mysterious ribbon around our solar system —- a stripe made of hydrogen —- that defies all current expectations about what the edge of the solar system might look like. Richard Fisher, the director of NASA's Heliophysics Division, tells NPR's Guy Raz that this discovery is a big moment for the scientific community. "We thought we knew everything about everything, and it turned out that there were unknown unknowns."
  • Giant Backward Ring Found Around Saturn

    10/08/2009 9:54:25 AM PDT · by GodGunsGuts · 27 replies · 2,394+ views
    CEH ^ | October 7, 2009
    Oct 7, 2009 — Saturn has a newly-discovered ring to add to its decor – the largest of all. It’s so big, it makes Saturn look like a speck in the middle of it. The ring, located at the orbit of the small outer moon Phoebe, is inclined 27 degrees and revolves backwards around Saturn. This was announced today by...
  • The Curious Case of Missing Asteroids

    03/03/2009 7:31:32 PM PST · by SunkenCiv · 38 replies · 720+ views
    NASA Solar System Exploration ^ | February 25, 2009 | Lori Stiles
    University of Arizona scientists have uncovered a curious case of missing asteroids. The main asteroid belt is a zone containing millions of rocky objects between the orbits of Mars and Jupiter. The scientists find that there ought to be more asteroids there than researchers observe. The missing asteroids may be evidence of an event that took place about 4 billion years ago, when the solar system's giant planets migrated to their present locations. UA planetary sciences graduate student David A. Minton and UA planetary sciences professor Renu Malhotra say missing asteroids is an important piece of evidence to support an...
  • Saturn Ring Shrinkage Result of Global Mating

    03/19/2008 6:21:16 PM PDT · by Eleutheria5 · 33 replies · 1,067+ views
    What happened to Saturn's rings? Amateur astronomers have noticed something different when they peer through their telescopes recently. "The rings have narrowed considerably in the last year," one said. "The Cassini division (a dark gap in the rings) is getting hard to see."
  • Saturn Moon Rhea May Have rings (Neat!)

    03/06/2008 2:11:24 PM PST · by Pyro7480 · 18 replies · 200+ views
    Yahoo! News (AP) ^ | 3/6/2008 | n/a
    PASADENA, Calif. - New observations by a spacecraft suggest Saturn's second-largest moon may be surrounded by rings. If confirmed, it would the first time a ring system has been found around a moon. The international Cassini spacecraft detected what appeared to be a large debris disk around the 950-mile-wide moon Rhea during a flyby in 2005. Scientists proposed that the halo likely contained particles ranging from the size of grains to boulders. The finding was described in a study published in the March 7 issue of the journal Science. Unlike the rings around Saturn, Jupiter, Uranus and Neptune, the apparent...
  • Kinks in Saturn's Rings

    11/13/2007 11:02:21 AM PST · by Swordmaker · 23 replies · 102+ views ^ | 11/12/2007
      Edge-on image of Saturn's F-ring. Credit: NASA/JPL Cassini-Huygens mission.   Nov 12, 2007Kinks in Saturn's RingsBraids and twists in the rings of Saturn suggest activity in addition to gravitational attraction. Could electricity be one of the formative agents? Saturn's F-ring was discovered by Pioneer 11 during its 1979 flyby of the giant planet. When the Voyager 1 space probe passed by Saturn in November of 1980, it returned stunning pictures of Saturn's rings that were completely unanticipated. Two of the most intriguing discoveries were the "spokes" seen drifting above the ring plane and the twisted and interlaced structure...
  • Neptune News [Neptune's warming correlates to Earth's warming and solar activity]

    05/31/2007 11:29:24 AM PDT · by grundle · 64 replies · 3,777+ views
    Neptune is the planet farthest from the Sun (Pluto is now considered only a dwarf planet), Neptune is the planet farthest from the Earth, and to our knowledge, there has been absolutely no industrialization out at Neptune in recent centuries. There has been no recent build-up of greenhouse gases there, no deforestation, no rapid urbanization, no increase in contrails from jet airplanes, and no increase in ozone in the low atmosphere; recent changes at Neptune could never be blamed on any human influence. Incredibly, an article has appeared in a recent issue of Geophysical Research Letters showing a stunning relationship...
  • Scientists spot new ring around Saturn

    09/20/2006 5:00:55 PM PDT · by NormsRevenge · 12 replies · 269+ views
    AP on Yahoo ^ | 9/20/06 | AP
    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...
  • Pluto Might Have Rings

    02/23/2006 10:16:50 AM PST · by nickcarraway · 22 replies · 579+ views ^ | 22 February 2006 | Ker Than
    The two moons discovered around Pluto last year were likely formed from the same giant impact that created the planet’s much larger satellite, Charon, scientists say. The idea suggests that other Kuiper Belt Objects might also harbor multiple satellites and raises the possibility that Pluto is encircled by rings fashioned from debris ejected from the surface of the tiny moons. The two moons, called P1 and P2 for now, were discovered in May 2005 using the Hubble Space Telescope. Scientists now think the two moons are roughly 37 and 31 miles (60 and 50 km) in diameter. Charon has an...
  • Recent Changes in Saturn Rings Puzzle Scientists (Bush Administration to Blame)

    09/07/2005 4:05:24 AM PDT · by nuke rocketeer · 9 replies · 363+ views ^ | 9/7/05 | AP
    LOS ANGELES (AP) -- New observations by the international Cassini spacecraft reveal that Saturn's trademark shimmering rings, which have dazzled astronomers since Galileo's time, have dramatically changed over just the past 25 years. Among the most surprising findings is that parts of Saturn's innermost ring -- the D ring -- have grown dimmer since the Voyager spacecraft flew by the planet in 1981, and a piece of the D ring has moved 125 miles inward toward Saturn.
  • Changes in Saturn Rings Puzzle Scientists

    09/06/2005 2:14:47 PM PDT · by siunevada · 59 replies · 1,299+ views
    AP/ ^ | September 6, 2005 | Alicia Chang
    LOS ANGELES (AP) - New observations by the international Cassini spacecraft reveal that Saturn's trademark shimmering rings, which have dazzled astronomers since Galileo's time, have dramatically changed over just the past 25 years. Among the most surprising findings is that parts of Saturn's innermost ring - the D ring - have grown dimmer since the Voyager spacecraft flew by the planet in 1981, and a piece of the D ring has moved 125 miles inward toward Saturn. While scientists puzzle over what caused the changes, their observations could reveal something about the age and lifetime of the rings. Cassini-related discoveries...
  • Another giant leap: Scientists around the world are eyeing the moon as a future research lab

    01/28/2004 5:33:54 PM PST · by ambrose · 10 replies · 223+ views
    Christian Science Monitor ^ | 1.29.04 | Peter N. Spotts
    from the January 29, 2004 edition - Another giant leapScientists around the world are eyeing the moon as a future research lab and a gateway to space exploration, while companies look at commercial prospects.By Peter N. Spotts | Staff writer of The Christian Science Monitor It's been dubbed Earth's attic, a keystone for understanding the early history of the inner planets, and even a potential safe-deposit box for evidence of life early in the solar system's history. By whatever label, the moon's star appears to be rising. Even before President Bush unveiled his space policy earlier this month,...
  • New tiny moon found orbiting faraway Neptune

    07/15/2013 1:16:22 PM PDT · by Olog-hai · 27 replies
    Associated Press ^ | Jul 15, 2013 4:08 PM EDT | Marcia Dunn
    Chalk up one more moon for Neptune. NASA announced the discovery of Neptune’s 14th moon Monday. The Hubble Space Telescope captured the moon as a white dot in photos of Neptune on the outskirts of our solar system. The new moon—Neptune’s tiniest at just 12 miles across—is designated S/2004 N 1. …
  • Saturn's Moon Iapetus Is the Yin-and-Yang of the Solar System

    09/17/2007 10:10:17 AM PDT · by LRS · 33 replies · 1,209+ views
    jpl.nasa ^ | September 12, 2007
    PASADENA, Calif. – Scientists on the Cassini mission to Saturn are poring through hundreds of images returned from the Sept. 10 flyby of Saturn's two-toned moon Iapetus. Pictures returned late Tuesday and early Wednesday show the moon's yin and yang--a white hemisphere resembling snow, and the other as black as tar. Images show a surface that is heavily cratered, along with the mountain ridge that runs along the moon's equator. Many of the close-up observations focused on studying the strange 20-kilometer high (12 mile) mountain ridge that gives the moon a walnut-shaped appearance. "The images are really stunning," said Tilmann...
  • Saturn's sixtieth moon discovered

    07/21/2007 1:51:50 AM PDT · by Jedi Master Pikachu · 12 replies · 241+ views
    BBC ^ | July 21, 2007 (Saturday).
    The new moon could be related to Methone and Pallene A new moon has been discovered orbiting Saturn - bringing the planet's latest moon tally up to 60.The body was spotted in a series of images taken by cameras onboard the Cassini spacecraft. Initial calculations suggest the moon is about 2km-wide (1.2 miles) and its orbit sits between those of two other Saturnian moons, Methone and Pallene. The Cassini Imaging Team, who found the object, said Saturn's moon count could rise further still. New family The moon appears as a dim speck in images taken by the Cassini probe's...
  • Uranus moons seen overtaking each other for first time

    05/18/2007 1:55:23 PM PDT · by bedolido · 22 replies · 488+ views ^ | 5-18-2007 | Kelly Young
    For the first time, astronomers have glimpsed one of Uranus's 27 moons passing in front of one of its siblings – a fleeting alignment that can reveal information about the moons, such as their mass, that cannot be gleaned in any other way. Researchers hope this will be the first in a bonanza of data returned from Uranus in the next year. That is because Uranus, which orbits the Sun every 84 years, is in an ideal geometry to view its moons. Such periods come around only once every 42 years, and the next will not occur until 2049.This series...
  • Probe reveals seas on Saturn moon (Titan--hydrocarbon seas, not water).

    03/14/2007 1:05:51 PM PDT · by Jedi Master Pikachu · 11 replies · 415+ views
    BBC ^ | Wednesday, March 14, 2007 | Paul Rincon
    The Cassini radar image (left) shows one of Titan's seas is larger than Lake Superior (right) Nasa's Cassini probe has found evidence for seas, probably filled with liquid hydrocarbons, at the high northern latitudes of Saturn's moon Titan.The dark features, detected by Cassini's radar, are much bigger than any lakes already detected on Titan. The largest is some 100,000 sq km (39,000 sq miles) - greater in extent than North America's Lake Superior. It covers a greater fraction of Titan than the proportion of Earth covered by the Black Sea. The Black Sea is the Earth's largest inland sea...
  • Major space missions move ahead

    03/12/2007 3:18:29 PM PDT · by Jedi Master Pikachu · 12 replies · 439+ views
    BBC ^ | Monday, March 12, 2007 | Paul Rincon
    What should follow the great success of Cassini-Huygens? The European and US space agencies are moving ahead on their next major missions to explore the Solar System. Nasa has begun choosing a destination for a "flagship" robotic venture along the lines of Cassini-Huygens, which has been exploring Saturn and its moons. It is considering four targets: the Jupiter system, Jupiter's moon Europa, and Saturn's moons Enceladus and Titan. The European Space Agency has called for proposals for one flagship mission and another medium-sized mission. Europa, Titan and Enceladus are also among the destinations expected to be proposed under the...
  • Planets Around Planets?

    06/05/2006 7:32:33 PM PDT · by KevinDavis · 6 replies · 359+ views
    Sky and Telescope ^ | 06/05/06 | Robert Naeye
    June 5, 2006 | Evidence continues to mount that planets can form around very-low-mass objects. In fact, planets might even form around objects that are so low in mass that they themselves could be considered "planets." The latest results, reported at this week's American Astronomical Society meeting in Calgary, Alberta, come from groups led by Ray Jayawardhana (University of Toronto, Canada) and Subhanjoy Mohanty (Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics).
  • Jupiter moon 'full of holes' (2002)

    05/14/2006 8:31:52 PM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 15 replies · 233+ views
    BBC News Online ^ | Tuesday, December 10, 2002 | Dr David Whitehouse
    Tiny, red-tinted Amalthea is only about 270 kilometres (168 miles) in length and half that in width. Its mass, estimated from its gravitational effect on Galileo when the spacecraft passed within about 160 kilometres (99 miles) of the moon on 5 November, is far smaller than had been predicted. Amalthea's overall density is close to the density of water ice, Dr Anderson says. But the moon is almost certainly not a solid hunk of ice... Dr Johnson adds: "This finding supports the idea that the inner moons of Jupiter have undergone intense bombardment and break-up. Amalthea may have formed originally...
  • Hubble discovers new rings and moons around Uranus

    12/29/2005 11:26:39 AM PST · by iPod Shuffle · 75 replies · 7,673+ views
    Kerala ^ | 12/23/05
    Hubble discovers new rings and moons around Uranus Washington: NASA's Hubble Space Telescope has discovered a new pair of rings around Uranus and two new small satellites orbiting the planet. The rings are very far away from the planet and the largest of them is twice the diameter of the planet's previously known rings. Astronomers are now calling them Uranus' second ring system. Also one of the new moons shares its orbit with one of the rings. The findings are to be published in the journal Science. Dr. Jennifer Wiseman, program scientist for Hubble at NASA Headquarters said that analysis...
  • Pluto Has Three Moons, Hubble Images Show

    10/31/2005 6:22:32 PM PST · by NormsRevenge · 101 replies · 1,880+ views
    ap on Yahoo ^ | 10/31/05 | Alex Dominguez - ap
    BALTIMORE - Pluto has three moons, not one, new images from the Hubble Space Telescope suggest. Pluto, discovered as the ninth planet in 1930, was thought to be alone until its moon Charon was spotted in 1978. The new moons, more than twice as far away as Charon and many times fainter, were spotted by Hubble in May. While the observations have to be confirmed, members of the team that discovered the satellites said Monday they felt confident about their data. "Pluto and Charon are not alone, they have two neighbors," said Hal Weaver of the Johns Hopkins University Applied...
  • Twelve new moons for Saturn

    05/04/2005 3:57:15 PM PDT · by LibWhacker · 14 replies · 595+ views
    BBC ^ | 5/4/05 | Dr David Whitehouse
    Astronomers have discovered 12 new moons orbiting Saturn, bringing its number of natural satellites to 46.The moons are small, irregular bodies - probably only about 3-7km in size - that are far from Saturn and take about two years to complete one orbit. All but one circles Saturn in the opposite direction to its larger moons - a characteristic of captured bodies. Jupiter is the planet with the most moons, 63 at the last count. Saturn now has 46. Uranus has 27 and Neptune 13. The latest ones were found last year using the Subaru telescope in Hawaii. Confirmation...
  • Northrop Grumman to co-design Jupiter moons explorer for NASA - JIMO / Prometheus

    09/20/2004 8:31:37 PM PDT · by NormsRevenge · 16 replies · 815+ views
    Bakersfield Californian ^ | 9/20/04 | AP - Pasadena
    PASADENA, Calif. (AP) - Northrop Grumman Space Technology has been selected to help NASA design a nuclear-powered spacecraft to orbit and explore three moons of Jupiter that may have oceans beneath their icy surfaces. The $400 million contract with the Redondo Beach, Calif.-based unit of Northrop Grumman covers work through mid-2008, NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory said Monday. The Prometheus Jupiter Icy Moons Orbiter spacecraft will be designed to explore Callisto, Ganymede and Europa sometime in the next decade, after launching in 2012 or later. Scientists want to know what the big moons are made of, their history and whether the...
  • Cassini CHAT now Online and available... IRC (

    06/09/2004 1:40:56 PM PDT · by Pandelirium · 3 replies · 430+ views
    Cassini CHAT online on IRC (freenode) The Cassini Chat has been activated and is now available without password to the public. Anyone interested in the discussion should log-in to the servers and point your chat-client to the #cassini room. There you will find some of the people involved with the project, many very knowledgable people involved in other space projects, as well as those interested in these endeavours ...(like you). We also moderate the Mars Rover chat as well which is located in the #maestro room. Maestro is the free 'public-outreach' software based on the actual program that JPL...
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day 10-24-03

    10/23/2003 10:30:11 PM PDT · by petuniasevan · 5 replies · 253+ views
    NASA ^ | 10-24-03 | Robert Nemiroff and Jerry Bonnell
    Astronomy Picture of the Day Discover the cosmos! Each day a different image or photograph of our fascinating universe is featured, along with a brief explanation written by a professional astronomer. 2003 October 24 Mars Moons Credit & Copyright: Johannes Schedler (Panther Observatory) Explanation: This year's record close approach of Mars inspired many to enjoy telescopic views of the red planet. But while Mars was so bright it was hard to miss, spotting Mars' two diminutive moons was still a good test for observers with modest sized instruments. Mars' moons were discovered in August of 1877 by Asaph Hall...

    10/21/2003 3:48:24 PM PDT · by boris · 76 replies · 692+ views
    Space News, page 10 ^ | October 20, 200e
    TINY MOONS DISCOVERED AT URANUS Astronomers using NASAs Hubble Space Telescope discovered two of the smallest moons yet found orbiting Uranus, NASA announced. The two moons, each about 12 to 16 kilometers in diameter, are so faint they were not detected by the Voyager 2 spacecraft, which discovered 10 small moons when it flew by Uranus in 1986. Uranus now has 24 known moons. Astronomers hope to learn more about the orbits of the moons and their interaction with other Uranus moons with further Hubble observations. They also want to understand what role the newly discovered moons may play in...
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day 1-15-03

    01/15/2003 6:12:16 AM PST · by petuniasevan · 11 replies · 321+ views
    NASA ^ | 1-15-03 | Robert Nemiroff and Jerry Bonnell
    Astronomy Picture of the Day Discover the cosmos! Each day a different image or photograph of our fascinating universe is featured, along with a brief explanation written by a professional astronomer. 2003 January 15 Ringed Planet Uranus Credit: E. Lellouch, T. Encrenaz (Obs. Paris), J. Cuby , A. Jaunsen (ESO-Chile), VLT Antu, ESO Explanation: Yes it does look like Saturn, but Saturn is one of only four giant ringed planets in our Solar System. And while Saturn has the brightest rings, this system of rings and moons actually belongs to planet Uranus, imaged here in near-infrared light by the...
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day 1-10-03

    01/10/2003 3:57:30 AM PST · by petuniasevan · 4 replies · 311+ views
    NASA ^ | 1-10-03 | Robert Nemiroff and Jerry Bonnell
    Astronomy Picture of the Day Discover the cosmos! Each day a different image or photograph of our fascinating universe is featured, along with a brief explanation written by a professional astronomer. 2003 January 10 The Crab that Played with the Planet Credit & Copyright: Ron Wodaski, Newastro Remote Telescope at New Mexico Skies Explanation: Wandering through the constellation Taurus, Saturn made its closest approach to planet Earth last month, tilting its lovely rings toward appreciative skygazers while rising high in midnight skies. On January 4th and 5th, Saturn also crossed in front of the high and far-off Crab Nebula...
  • Moon's Youngest Crater Discovered

    12/19/2002 7:42:01 PM PST · by blam · 12 replies · 597+ views
    BBC ^ | 12-20-2002
    Friday, 20 December, 2002, 01:57 GMT Moon's youngest crater discovered Is this the youngest crater on the Moon? By Dr David Whitehouse BBC News Online science editor Astronomers have discovered the only known lunar crater to have been formed in recorded history. In 1953 a flash was seen on the Moon that was taken to be the impact of a small asteroid. But ground-based telescopes were not powerful enough to see any crater. But now, searching more detailed images of the Moon obtained by orbiting spacecraft, researchers have found a small, fresh, crater in the same position as the flash....