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Keyword: saturn

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  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- The Moon Eclipses Saturn

    07/16/2014 2:18:00 PM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 12 replies
    NASA ^ | July 16, 2014 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: What happened to half of Saturn? Nothing other than Earth's Moon getting in the way. As pictured above on the far right, Saturn is partly eclipsed by a dark edge of a Moon itself only partly illuminated by the Sun. This year the orbits of the Moon and Saturn have led to an unusually high number of alignments of the ringed giant behind Earth's largest satellite. Technically termed an occultation, the above image captured one such photogenic juxtaposition from Buenos Aires, Argentina that occurred early last week. Visible to the unaided eye but best viewed with binoculars, there are...
  • Saturn’s Moon Titan Has Salty Sea

    07/05/2014 9:53:03 PM PDT · by BenLurkin · 35 replies
    americanlivewire.com ^ | Will Phoenix
    According to new findings just published in this week’s edition of the journal Icarus, NASA’s Cassini Mission has brought to light new evidence of an actual ocean inside Titan, Saturn’s biggest moon. Furthermore, the ocean in question might even be as salt-laden as Earth’s Dead Sea. This is but the latest discovery resulting from an analysis of data on topography and gravity gathered during the past decade. Scientists discovered that an extremely high density was needed for the surface ocean of Titan to explain the information on the gravity. This means that Titan’s ocean has to be a very “salty...
  • Cassini Observes TITAN: Methane Lakes, Natural Plastic, Mysterious Radio Signals, and 'Magic Island'

    06/25/2014 9:14:25 AM PDT · by Reaganite Republican · 21 replies
    Reaganite Republican ^ | 24 June 2014 | Reaganite Republican
    TITAN: rendering of methane lake, view of host planet saturn at night If you haven't been following, the NASA-ESA Cassini space mission has recently passed-by the largest of Saturn's 150 moons/moonlets: Titan is a natural satellite 1.5x the size of our own moon that makes up a full 90% of the orbiting mass around the gas giant.  And while Saturn is a large, windy gas ball, its planet-like moon Titan actually has a solid surface compromised of mostly rocks and water ice, retains an atmosphere (majority nitrogen, same as Earth- yet 2x the pressure), and features massive lakes of methane/ethane -one the size of Lake...
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- Persistent Saturnian Auroras

    06/22/2014 10:19:18 AM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 7 replies
    NASA ^ | June 22, 2014 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: Are Saturn's auroras like Earth's? To help answer this question, the Hubble Space Telescope and the Cassini spacecraft monitored Saturn's South Pole simultaneously as Cassini closed in on the gas giant in January 2004. Hubble snapped images in ultraviolet light, while Cassini recorded radio emissions and monitored the solar wind. Like on Earth, Saturn's auroras make total or partial rings around magnetic poles. Unlike on Earth, however, Saturn's auroras persist for days, as opposed to only minutes on Earth. Although surely created by charged particles entering the atmosphere, Saturn's auroras also appear to be more closely modulated by the...
  • Saturn's Magnetic Field Auroras: Evidence for Creation

    06/04/2014 9:03:05 AM PDT · by fishtank · 11 replies
    Institute for Creation Research ^ | 6-4-2014 | Brian Thomas
    Saturn's Magnetic Field Auroras: Evidence for Creation by Brian Thomas, M.S. * Over a million people have viewed the NASA video "Walking On Air," which features stunning arctic and Antarctic auroras photographed from the International Space Station.1 They look like glowing green metallic clouds swirling high above broad stretches of Earth's poles. New evidence confirms that, like Earth, Saturn's magnetic field helps create its own auroras. This space spectacle attracts a more fundamental question about where its magnetic field came from in the first place. Though Saturn is incredibly distant, the Hubble telescope was able to record its auroras in...
  • Awesome Image of Saturn's Moon Iapetus and Its Incredible Back-bone Looking Mountain Range

    04/21/2014 9:57:50 AM PDT · by lbryce · 56 replies
    Phys.org ^ | April 21, 2014 | NASA
    Orginal Title:Study of Equatorial Ridge on Iapetus Suggests Exogenic OriginYou Really Don't Prefer The Original Title, Do You? A combined team of researchers from Brown University in Rhode Island and the Lunar and Planetary Institute in Texas is suggesting in a paper they've uploaded to the preprint server arXiv, that an equatorial mountainous ridge on one of Saturn's moons has an exogenic origin. They are basing their theory on 3D models of the moon they've created and an analysis of the types of peaks present. Iapetus, the 3rd largest of Saturn's approximately 60 moons, is distinct for two reasons. One...
  • 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...
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- Saturn in Blue and Gold

    04/12/2014 9:33:33 PM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 22 replies
    NASA ^ | April 13, 2014 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: Why is Saturn partly blue? The above picture of Saturn approximates what a human would see if hovering close to the giant ringed world. The above picture was taken in 2006 March by the robot Cassini spacecraft now orbiting Saturn. Here Saturn's majestic rings appear directly only as a thin vertical line. The rings show their complex structure in the dark shadows they create on the image left. Saturn's fountain moon Enceladus, only about 500 kilometers across, is seen as the bump in the plane of the rings. The northern hemisphere of Saturn can appear partly blue for the...
  • NASA's WISE Colors in Unknowns on Jupiter Asteroids

    10/16/2012 9:32:49 AM PDT · by BenLurkin · 8 replies
    "We're NASA and we know it!" ^ | October 15, 2012 | Whitney Clavin
    Scientists using data from NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer, or WISE, have uncovered new clues in the ongoing mystery of the Jovian Trojans -- asteroids that orbit the sun on the same path as Jupiter. Like racehorses, the asteroids travel in packs, with one group leading the way in front of the gas giant, and a second group trailing behind. The observations are the first to get a detailed look at the Trojans' colors: both the leading and trailing packs are made up of predominantly dark, reddish rocks with a matte, non-reflecting surface. What's more, the data verify the previous...
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- Two Rings for Asteroid Chariklo

    04/09/2014 2:34:44 AM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 15 replies
    NASA ^ | April 09, 2014 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: Asteroids can have rings. In a surprising discovery announced two weeks ago, the distant asteroid 10199 Chariklo was found to have at least two orbiting rings. Chariklo's diameter of about 250 kilometers makes it the largest of the measured centaur asteroids, but now the smallest known object to have rings. The centaur-class minor planet orbits the Sun between Saturn and Uranus. The above video gives an artist's illustration of how the rings were discovered. As Chariklo passed in 2013 in front of a faint star, unexpected but symmetric dips in the brightness of the star revealed the rings. Planetary...
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- Fresh Tiger Stripes on Saturn's Enceladus

    04/06/2014 1:59:16 PM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 24 replies
    NASA ^ | April 06, 2014 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: Do underground oceans vent through the tiger stripes on Saturn's moon Enceladus? Long features dubbed tiger stripes are known to be spewing ice from the moon's icy interior into space, creating a cloud of fine ice particles over the moon's South Pole and creating Saturn's mysterious E-ring. Evidence for this has come from the robot Cassini spacecraft now orbiting Saturn. Pictured above, a high resolution image of Enceladus is shown from a close flyby. The unusual surface features dubbed tiger stripes are visible in false-color blue. Why Enceladus is active remains a mystery, as the neighboring moon Mimas, approximately...
  • Hidden Ocean Found on Saturn's Icy Moon Enceladus, Could Potentially Support Life

    04/03/2014 3:01:44 PM PDT · by mandaladon · 11 replies
    Yahoo News ^ | 3 Apr 2014 | Mike Wall
    The Saturn moon Enceladus harbors a big ocean of liquid water beneath its icy crust that may be capable of supporting life as we know it, a new study reports. The water ocean on Enceladus is about 6 miles (10 kilometers) deep and lies beneath a shell of ice 19 to 25 miles (30 to 40 km) thick, researchers said. Further, it's in direct contact with a rocky seafloor, theoretically making possible all kinds of complex chemical reactions — such as, perhaps, the kind that led to the rise of life on Earth. "The main implication is that there are...
  • Asteroid Found with Rings! First-of-Its-Kind Discovery Stuns Astronomers

    03/26/2014 12:05:41 PM PDT · by 12th_Monkey · 51 replies
    Space.com ^ | March 26, 2014 | Nola Taylor Redd
    Scientists have made a stunning discovery in the outer realm of the solar system — an asteroid with its own set of rings that orbits the sun between Saturn and Uranus. The space rock is the first non-planetary object ever found to have its own ring system, researchers say. The pair of space rock rings encircle the asteroid Chariklo. They were most likely formed after a collision scattered debris around the asteroid, according to a new study unveiled today (March 27). The asteroid rings also suggests the presence of a still-undiscovered moon around Chariklo that's keeping them stable, researchers said....
  • ET phone Earth? Light on Saturn's large moon Titan likely waves, scientists say

    03/20/2014 10:04:28 AM PDT · by avalonmistmoon · 47 replies
    Fox News ^ | March 20 2014 | Fox News
    Did NASA just spotted the crash spot of the Malaysia Airline missing jet. .
  • 'Waves' detected on Titan moon’s lakes

    03/18/2014 1:25:36 PM PDT · by don-o · 38 replies
    BBC ^ | March 18, 2014 | Paul Rincon
    Scientists believe they have detected the first liquid waves on the surface of another world. The signature of isolated ripples was observed in a sea called Punga Mare on the surface of Saturn's moon Titan. However, these seas are filled not with water, but with hydrocarbons like methane and ethane. These exist in their liquid state on Titan, where the surface temperature averages about -180C. Planetary scientist Jason Barnes discussed details of his findings at the 45th Lunar and Planetary Science Conference (LPSC) in Texas this week. Continue reading the main story “Start Quote We think we've found the first...
  • On the Fringe: Astronomers look to the Kuiper belt for clues to the solar system's history

    01/14/2010 3:15:11 PM PST · by SunkenCiv · 12 replies · 732+ views
    Science News ^ | January 16th, 2010 | Ron Cowen
    Beyond Neptune lies a reservoir of... icy debris left to roam the solar system's dim outer limits having never coalesced into planets... Named for astronomer Gerard Kuiper, who in 1951 predicted the existence of this 3-billion-kilometer-wide swath of icy chunks, the Kuiper belt didn't begin to reveal itself to observers until 1992. Since then, researchers have found more than a thousand bodies filling a doughnut-shaped belt, which extends 30 to about 50 astronomical units from the sun. One astronomical unit is the average distance between the Earth and sun... The puffed-up, elongated orbits and present-day sparseness of the belt all...
  • Death Spiral: Why Theorists Can't Make Solar Systems

    03/29/2006 10:21:37 AM PST · by SunkenCiv · 22 replies · 464+ views
    SPACE.com ^ | Tue March 28, 2006 | Ker Than
    For scientists who spend time thinking about how planets form, life would be simpler if gas giants like Jupiter and Saturn didn’t exist. According to the standard model of planet formation, called "core accretion," planets form over millions of years as enormous blocks of rock and ice smash together to form planetary embryos, called "protoplanets," and eventually full-fledged planets. Most scientists agree that core accretion is how terrestrial planets such as Earth and Mars were created, but the model can’t convincingly explain how gas giant planets like Jupiter and Saturn came to be. One major problem is that developing gas...
  • Watch the Moon Meet Venus in the Dawn this Wednesday

    02/24/2014 5:37:34 PM PST · by BenLurkin · 11 replies
    universetoday.com ^ | February 24, 2014 | David Dickinson on
    Are you ready for some lunar versus planetary occultation action? One of the best events for 2014 occurs early this Wednesday morning on February 26th, when the waning crescent Moon — sometimes referred to as a decrescent Moon — meets up with a brilliant Venus in the dawn sky. This will be a showcase event for the ongoing 2014 dawn apparition of Venus that we wrote about recently. This is one of 16 occultations of a planet by our Moon for 2014, which will hide every naked eye classical planet except Jupiter and only one of two involving Venus this...
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- Cassini Spacecraft Crosses Saturn's Ring Plane

    02/23/2014 7:47:33 PM PST · by SunkenCiv · 15 replies
    NASA ^ | February 23, 2014 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: If this is Saturn, where are the rings? When Saturn's "appendages" disappeared in 1612, Galileo did not understand why. Later that century, it became understood that Saturn's unusual protrusions were rings and that when the Earth crosses the ring plane, the edge-on rings will appear to disappear. This is because Saturn's rings are confined to a plane many times thinner, in proportion, than a razor blade. In modern times, the robot Cassini spacecraft orbiting Saturn now also crosses Saturn's ring plane. A series of plane crossing images from 2005 February was dug out of the vast online Cassini raw...
  • New Hi-Res Footage Shows Saturn's Mysterious Hexagon Like Never Before

    02/14/2014 12:47:21 AM PST · by Windflier · 42 replies
    i09.com ^ | Robert T. Gonzalez
    You're looking at a newly released 8-frame movie of Saturn's enigmatic "hexagon." It is the highest-resolution footage ever acquired of the massive six-sided maelstrom atop the ringed planet's north pole, and boy howdy is it gorgeous. For the uninitiated, Saturn's uncannily symmetric cloud system measures roughly 20,000-miles across, and is utterly unique in our solar system. Its dimensions and dynamics are just bizarre. At the hexagon's center whirls a tightly wound hurricane roughly fifty-times larger than the average hurricane-eye on Earth. About it spins an assortment of smaller vortices, caught up in the hexagon's jet stream, that rotate clockwise, even...
  • Planetary alignment caused tsunami: Scientist

    04/21/2005 1:43:15 AM PDT · by nickcarraway · 29 replies · 998+ views
    Press Trust of India ^ | April 16, 2005
    The deadly tsunami on December 26, 2004 was the result of Saturn, Moon, Earth and the Sun falling in a straight line, claims a retired scientist of Department of Atomic Energy. Paramahamsa Tewari, who supervised construction of Narora and Kaiga atomic plants and authored controversial "space vortex theory", says his conclusion about the cause of tsunami stems from his theory that all spinning cosmic objects including the Sun develop electrical fields that repel each other. On the fateful day, Saturn, Moon, Earth and the Sun were perfectly aligned. As a result, Earth was subjected to the repulsive electrical force of...
  • NASA's Cassini Spacecraft Obtains Best Views of Saturn Hexagon (Videos)(Awesome Is Inadequate)

    02/06/2014 3:56:45 PM PST · by lbryce · 28 replies
    JPL NASA ^ | December 4, 2013 | Staff
    This colorful view from NASA's Cassini mission is the highest-resolution view of the unique six-sided jet stream at Saturn's north pole known as "the hexagon." This movie, made from images obtained by Cassini's imaging cameras, is the first to show the hexagon in color filters, and the first movie to show a complete view from the north pole down to about 70 degrees north latitude. Image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/SSI/Hampton University This colorful view from NASA's Cassini mission is the highest-resolution view of the unique six-sided jet stream at Saturn's north pole known as "the hexagon." This movie, made from images...
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- From the Northern to the Southern Cross

    01/27/2014 4:22:54 PM PST · by SunkenCiv · 9 replies
    NASA ^ | January 27, 2014 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: There is a road that connects the Northern to the Southern Cross but you have to be at the right place and time to see it. The road, as pictured above, is actually the central band of our Milky Way Galaxy; the right place, in this case, is dark Laguna Cejar in Salar de Atacama of Northern Chile; and the right time was in early October, just after sunset. Many sky wonders were captured then, including the bright Moon, inside the Milky Way arch; Venus, just above the Moon; Saturn and Mercury, just below the Moon; the Large and...
  • Saturn:The Bringer of Old Age

    01/21/2014 3:39:38 PM PST · by lbryce · 6 replies
    YouTube:Saturn:The Planets Op.32 Saturn YouTube:Saturn:The Planets Op.32 Saturn:Bringer of Old Age
  • A Distant View of Janus, One of Saturn’s ‘Dancing Moons’

    01/12/2014 1:52:59 PM PST · by BenLurkin · 6 replies
    universetoday.com ^ | January 12, 2014 | Jason Major on
    Janus and Epimetheus travel in nearly the same track, about 94,100 miles (151,500 km) out from Saturn. They occasionally pass each other, their gravity causing them to switch speeds and positions as they do; Janus goes faster and higher one time, slower and lower the next – but the two never come within more than about 6,200 miles of each other. The two moons switch positions roughly every four years. This scenario is referred to in astrophysics as a 1:1 resonance. Astronomers were initially confused when the moons were discovered in 1966 as it wasn’t known at the time that...
  • The Obama Legacy in Planetary Exploration

    01/06/2014 9:19:21 AM PST · by Farnsworth · 28 replies
    Space.com ^ | January 04, 2014 | Mark V. Sykes
    It is frustrating, at a time when other nations are in ascendancy in space, that the administration of U.S. President Barack Obama seems committed to undermining the nation's own solar system exploration program. The Obama administration cut NASA's planetary-sciences budget by 20 percent in 2013. It has taken the National Research Council's (NRC) recommendations for prioritizing planetary investments in bad economic times and turned those recommendations upside down. The administration continues to favor large, directed projects at the expense of programs and missions that are openly competed.
  • Egyptian Astrologer Warns: In 2014, Saturn Enters Sagittarius, Making Jews Stronger

    01/02/2014 3:26:33 PM PST · by markomalley · 28 replies
    MEMRI ^ | 12/31/2013
    In an end-of-year interview on Al-Nahar TV, Egyptian astrologer Sayyed Al-Shimi warned that whenever Saturn enters a fire sign, the Jews become stronger. Attributing various events, including the first World Zionist Congress, the Balfour Declaration, and the 1948, 1956, and 1967 wars, to the constellation of the stars, Al-Shimi warned that in December 2014, Saturn would enter Sagittarius again.Following are excerpts from the interview, which aired on Al-Nahar TV and was posted on the Internet on December 31, 2013: Sayyed Al-Shimi: Saturn will enter the fire sign of Sagittarius. My late father and I have had a long history with...
  • NASA’s Squishable Robot Ideal For Exploring Titan, Saturn’s Largest Moon

    12/29/2013 7:56:41 PM PST · by lbryce · 13 replies
    Digital Trends ^ | December 27, 2013 | Trevor Mogg
    The extreme challenges and conditions faced by rovers during missions to explore other planets has inspired researchers and engineers to look into alternative, more suitable designs. After considering the complicated choreography of a regular landing – as we saw with the Mars Curiosity rover in August last year – as well as the challenging terrain a rover often faces once it reaches a planet’s surface, engineers at NASA have come up with an ultra-flexible squishable robot designed to effortlessly cope with any planetary surface it finds itself on. Although the so-called Super Ball Bot has been in development for...
  • Enigma of Uranus solved at last

    03/10/2004 10:47:40 PM PST · by NormsRevenge · 41 replies · 788+ views
    Yahoo! News ^ | 3/10/04 | AFP - Paris
    PARIS (AFP) - Uranus has puzzled scientists ever since the probe Voyager 2 did a flyby in 1986 and found that its magnetic field appeared to break the planetary rulebook. The evidence from Earth, Jupiter and Saturn determined that a planet's magnetic field should be like that of a bar magnet, with a north and south pole that runs roughly along the sphere's rotational axis. But Uranus -- and Neptune, too, Voyager found -- are radically different. Their magnetic fields are tipped over (the north-to-south line lies midway to the equator or even closer) and there are two north and...
  • NASA's Cassini Spacecraft Obtains Best Views of Saturn Hexagon

    12/06/2013 8:17:20 AM PST · by oxcart · 19 replies
    NASA.gov ^ | 12/04/13
    NASA's Cassini spacecraft has obtained the highest-resolution movie yet of a unique six-sided jet stream, known as the hexagon, around Saturn's north pole. This is the first hexagon movie of its kind, using color filters, and the first to show a complete view of the top of Saturn down to about 70 degrees latitude. Spanning about 20,000 miles (30,000 kilometers) across, the hexagon is a wavy jet stream of 200-mile-per-hour winds (about 322 kilometers per hour) with a massive, rotating storm at the center. There is no weather feature exactly, consistently like this anywhere else in the solar system. "The...
  • Bizarre Saturn Vortex Swirls in Stunning New NASA Video (aka The Hexagon)

    12/05/2013 4:08:40 PM PST · by lbryce · 16 replies
    Space.com ^ | December 5, 2013 | Mike Wall
    A NASA probe has captured an amazing video of the huge and mysterious six-sided vortex spinning around Saturn's north pole. Scientists created the new video of Saturn's vortex from 128 images snapped by NASA's Cassini spacecraft in December 2012. It's the highest-resolution movie yet obtained of the giant hexagon, which is about 20,000 miles (32,000 kilometers) wide and has been swirling for at least 30 years, researchers said. "The hexagon is just a current of air, and weather features out there that share similarities to this are notoriously turbulent and unstable," Andrew Ingersoll, a Cassini imaging team member at the...
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- In the Shadow of Saturn

    11/13/2013 4:44:53 PM PST · by SunkenCiv · 13 replies
    NASA ^ | November 13, 2013 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: In the shadow of Saturn, unexpected wonders appear. The robotic Cassini spacecraft now orbiting Saturn drifted in giant planet's shadow earlier this year and looked back toward the eclipsed Sun. Cassini saw a unique and celebrated view. First, the night side of Saturn is seen to be partly lit by light reflected from its own majestic ring system. Next, Saturn's expansive ring system appears as majestic as always even from this odd angle. Ring particles, many glowing only as irregular crescents, slightly scatter sunlight toward Cassini in this natural color image. Several moons and ring features are also discernible....
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- Saturn from Above

    10/20/2013 9:27:09 PM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 22 replies
    NASA ^ | October 21, 2013 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: This image of Saturn could not have been taken from Earth. No Earth based picture could possibly view the night side of Saturn and the corresponding shadow cast across Saturn's rings. Since Earth is much closer to the Sun than Saturn, only the day side of the ringed planet is visible from the Earth. In fact, this image mosaic was taken earlier this month by the robotic Cassini spacecraft now orbiting Saturn. The beautiful rings of Saturn are seen in full expanse, while cloud details are visible including the polar hexagon surrounding the north pole, and an extended light-colored...
  • Evening Lectures on Migrating Planets, Hazardous Asteroids Search

    09/19/2009 8:05:57 AM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 7 replies · 379+ views
    University of Arizona ^ | September 4, 2009 | University Communications
    The University of Arizona Lunar and Planetary Laboratory is launching its Fall 2009 Evening Lecture Series with talks on wandering solar system planets and searches for hazardous asteroids from Mount Lemmon... Planetary sciences professor Renu Malhotra will speak on "Migrating Planets" on Tuesday, Sept. 15. [whoops] Did the solar system always look the way it is now? New studies by Malhotra and others find that the outer planets -- Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus and Neptune -- were more tightly clustered in the early solar system, then moved away from each other. Malhotra's models show that as the solar system evolved, Jupiter...
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- Earth Waves at Saturn

    08/24/2013 4:09:06 PM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 5 replies
    NASA ^ | August 24, 2013 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: This friendly photo collage is constructed from more than 1,400 images shared by denizens of planet Earth as part of the Cassini Mission's July 19th Wave at Saturn event. The base picture of Earth corresponds to the view from the Saturn-orbiting Cassini spacecraft on that date as its own cameras recorded images including planet Earth as a pale blue dot in the background. Of course, Saturn was 9.65 Astronomical Units away at the time, so it took light from all the waving Earth dwellers just over 80 minutes to travel there. Want to smile? Download and zoom in to...
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- Saturn, Titan, Rings, and Haze

    07/29/2013 3:32:58 PM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 13 replies
    NASA ^ | July 29, 2013 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: This is not a solar eclipse. Pictured above is a busy vista of moons and rings taken at Saturn. The large circular object in the center of the image is Titan, the largest moon of Saturn and one of the most intriguing objects in the entire Solar System. The dark spot in the center is the main solid part of the moon. The bright surrounding ring is atmospheric haze above Titan, gas that is scattering sunlight to a camera operating onboard the robotic Cassini spacecraft. Cutting horizontally across the image are the rings of Saturn, seen nearly edge on....
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- Two Views of Earth

    07/24/2013 3:46:18 AM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 12 replies
    NASA ^ | July 23, 2013 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: In a cross-Solar System interplanetary first, our Earth was photographed during the same day from both Mercury and Saturn. Pictured on the left, Earth is the pale blue dot just below the rings of Saturn, as captured by the robotic Cassini spacecraft now orbiting the gas giant. Pictured on the right, the Earth-Moon system is seen against a dark background, as captured by the robotic MESSENGER spacecraft now orbiting Mercury. In the MESSENGER image, the Earth (left) and Moon (right) shine brightly with reflected sunlight. MESSENGER took the overexposed image last Friday as part of a search for small...
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- Earth and Moon from Saturn

    07/22/2013 3:28:02 AM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 14 replies
    NASA ^ | July 22, 2013 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: You are here. Everyone you've ever known is here. Every human who has ever lived -- is here. Pictured above is the Earth-Moon system as captured by the Cassini mission orbiting Saturn in the outer Solar System. Earth is the brighter of the two spots near the center, while the Moon is visible to its lower left. The unprocessed image shows several streaks that are not stars but rather cosmic rays that struck the digital camera while it was taking the image. The image was snapped by Cassini on Friday and released on Saturday. At nearly the same time,...
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- The Seasons of Saturn

    07/21/2013 4:53:20 PM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 3 replies
    NASA ^ | July 21, 2013 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: Since Saturn's axis is tilted as it orbits the Sun, Saturn has seasons, like those of planet Earth ... but Saturn's seasons last for over seven years. So what season is it on Saturn now? Orbiting the equator, the tilt of the rings of Saturn provides quite a graphic seasonal display. Each year until 2016, Saturn's rings will be increasingly apparent after appearing nearly edge-on in 2009. The ringed planet is also well placed in evening skies providing a grand view as summer comes to Saturn's northern hemisphere and winter to the south. The Hubble Space Telescope took the...
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- Take a Picture of Saturn

    07/19/2013 3:41:41 PM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 9 replies
    NASA ^ | July 19, 2013 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: Take a picture of Saturn in the sky tonight. You could capture a view like this one. Recorded just last month looking toward the south, planet Earth and ruins of the ancient temple of Athena at Assos, Turkey are in the foreground. The Moon rises at the far left of the frame and Saturn is the bright "star" at the upper right, near Virgo's alpha star Spica (picture with labels). If you do take a picture of Saturn or wave at Saturn and take a picture, you can share it online and submit it to the Saturn Mosaic Project....
  • The First Interplanetary Photobomb

    07/17/2013 8:12:51 PM PDT · by EveningStar · 22 replies
    NASA ^ | July 17, 2013 | Dr. Tony Phillips
    Consider it the first interplanetary photobomb. On July 19th, NASA's Cassini spacecraft will photograph Earth through the rings of Saturn--and NASA wants you to jump into the shot. "Cassini has photographed Earth before, but this will be the first time Earthlings know in advance their picture will be taken from a billion miles away," says Linda Spilker, Cassini project scientist at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, CA. "We hope that people around the world will go outside to wave at Saturn while the photo-shoot is underway."
  • Wave at Saturn

    06/19/2013 6:33:54 AM PDT · by SpinnerWebb · 4 replies
    JPL NASA ^ | June 18, 2013 | Linda Spilker
    One of the most exciting Cassini events in 2013 will be the unusual opportunity on July 19 to image the whole Saturn system as it is backlit by the sun. With Saturn covering the harsh light of the sun, we will be gathering unique ring science and also catching a glimpse of our very own home planet.
  • The Rose: Spinning Vortex of Saturn Polar Storm

    05/02/2013 7:44:45 PM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 11 replies
    Scientific Computing ^ | Tuesday, April 30, 2013 | unattributed
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day

    10/27/2008 4:10:36 AM PDT · by sig226 · 3 replies · 681+ views
    NASA ^ | 10/27/08 | Cassini Imaging team
    Beneath the South Pole of Saturn Credit: Cassini Imaging Team, SSI, JPL, ESA, NASA Explanation: What clouds lurk beneath Saturn's unusual South Pole? To help find out, the robotic Cassini spacecraft currently orbiting Saturn imaged the nether region of the gigantic ringed orb in infrared light. There thick clouds appear dark as they mask much of the infrared light emitted from warmer regions below, while relatively thin clouds appear much lighter. Bands of clouds circle Saturn at several latitudes, while dark ovals indicate many dark swirling storm systems. Surprisingly, a haze of upper level clouds visible towards Saturn's equator disappears...
  • Saturn's Monstrous South Polar Storm - 5000 Miles across

    11/13/2007 12:34:35 PM PST · by Swordmaker · 22 replies · 83+ views
    Thunderbolts.org ^ | 11/01/2007
      ASA Sees into the Eye of a Monster Storm on Saturn. Cassini image recorded November 9, 2006 Source: NASA/JPL/Space Science Institute Nov 1, 2007Saturn's Monstrous Polar Storm A gigantic vortex centered on Saturn's south pole has sent astronomers scrambling for answers—again. They remain unaware that Wallace Thornhill had predicted this very "surprise."A recent image of Saturn’s south polar region, taken by the Cassini spacecraft, poses further mysteries for NASA investigators. The cameras reveal a giant hurricane-like “storm” with a polar eye, ringed by towering clouds.The "hurricane" spans a dark area inside a thick, brighter ring of clouds. It...
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- Humanity Explores the Solar System

    04/30/2013 5:10:54 PM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 14 replies
    NASA ^ | April 30, 2013 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: What spacecraft is humanity currently using to explore our Solar System? Presently, every inner planet has at least one robotic explorer, while several others are monitoring our Sun, some are mapping Earth's Moon, a few are chasing asteroids and comets, one is orbiting Saturn, and several are even heading out into deep space. The above illustration gives more details, with the inner Solar System depicted on the upper right and the outer Solar System on the lower left. Given the present armada, our current epoch might become known as the time when humanity first probed its own star system....
  • Saturn Reaches Opposition on April 28

    04/28/2013 5:58:43 PM PDT · by BenLurkin · 4 replies
    universetoday.com ^ | on April 28, 2013 | Nancy Atkinson
    Saturn is one of the most striking objects to see through a telescope, and it is now at its brightest in the night sky as it reaches opposition from the Sun. This is when Earth stands mostly perfectly in line between Saturn and the Sun. It is when Saturn is brightest (at magnitude +0.3), closely approximating famous “first magnitude” stars like Betelgeuse. Also, it is when Saturn is out all night long. Read more: http://www.universetoday.com/101730/saturn-reaches-opposition-on-april-28/#ixzz2RoFwCT4R
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- A Raging Storm System on Saturn

    04/28/2013 9:10:21 AM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 10 replies
    NASA ^ | April 28, 2013 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: It was one of the largest and longest lived storms ever recorded in our Solar System. † First seen in late 2010, the above cloud formation in the northern hemisphere of Saturn started larger than the Earth and soon spread completely around the planet. The storm was tracked not only from Earth but from up close by the robotic Cassini spacecraft currently orbiting Saturn. Pictured above in false colored infrared in February, orange colors indicate clouds deep in the atmosphere, while light colors highlight clouds higher up. The rings of Saturn are seen nearly edge-on as the thin blue...
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- The Moon's Saturn

    04/07/2013 6:48:39 AM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 11 replies
    NASA ^ | April 07, 2013 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: Just days after sharing the western evening sky with Venus in 2007, the Moon moved on to Saturn - actually passing in front of the ringed planet Saturn when viewed in skies over Europe, northern Africa, and western Asia. Because the Moon and bright planets wander through the sky near the ecliptic plane, such occultation events are not uncommon, but they are dramatic, especially in telescopic views. For example, in this sharp image Saturn is captured emerging from behind the Moon, giving the illusion that it lies just beyond the Moon's bright edge. Of course, the Moon is a...
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- Ringside with Rhea

    03/28/2013 9:19:03 PM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 4 replies
    NASA ^ | March 29, 2013 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: Orbiting in the plane of Saturn's rings, Saturnian moons have a perpetual ringside view of the gas giant planet. Of course, while passing near the ring plane the Cassini spacecraft also shares their stunning perspective. The thin rings themselves slice across the middle of this Cassini snapshot from April 2011. The scene looks toward the dark night side of Saturn, in the frame at the left, and the still sunlit side of the rings from just above the ringplane. Centered, over 1,500 kilometers across, Rhea is Saturn's second largest moon and is closest to the spacecraft, around 2.2 million...