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Latest Carolyn Porco Stories

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2009-12-31 07:40:00

A stunning view of Saturn from NASA's Cassini spacecraft has made Time Magazine's 2009 "Year in Pictures." The photo, released in September and dubbed "The Rite of Spring," was the first up close view from a spacecraft from Earth of Saturn's equinox, when the sun's disk is directly overhead at Saturn's equator. That sun angle illuminates the gas giant's famous rings edge-on, opening up a new perspective. As Cassini imaging team leader Carolyn Porco tells Time, "The geometry revealed...

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2009-12-23 14:55:00

Like sugar plum fairies in "The Nutcracker," the moons of Saturn performed a celestial ballet before the eyes of NASA's Cassini spacecraft. New movies frame the moons' silent dance against the majestic sweep of the planet's rings and show as many as four moons gliding around one another. To celebrate the holidays, the Cassini imaging team has created a video collection of "mutual events," which occur when one moon passes in front of another, as seen from the spacecraft. Imaging scientists use...

2009-09-21 13:00:00

PASADENA, Calif., Sept. 21 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- NASA scientists are marveling over the extent of ruffles and dust clouds revealed in the rings of Saturn during the planet's equinox last month. Scientists once thought the rings were almost completely flat, but new images reveal the heights of some newly discovered bumps in the rings are as high as the Rocky Mountains. NASA released the images Monday. (Logo: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20081007/38461LOGO ) "It's like...

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2009-09-21 13:10:00

NASA scientists are marveling over the extent of ruffles and dust clouds revealed in the rings of Saturn during the planet's equinox last month. Scientists once thought the rings were almost completely flat, but new images reveal the heights of some newly discovered bumps in the rings are as high as the Rocky Mountains. NASA released the images Monday. "It's like putting on 3-D glasses and seeing the third dimension for the first time," said Bob Pappalardo, Cassini project scientist at NASA's...

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2009-08-15 06:55:00

The jointly owned U.S. and European spacecraft Cassini has transmitted raw images back to Earth of the instant Saturn reached its equinox. Scientists are now studying the pictures in hopes they might reveal new information about the planet's ring system. Equinox occurs when the Sun crosses a planet's equator, creating days and nights of equal length.  During Saturn's equinox, the Sun's angle over the planet is lowered, revealing new objects and irregularities as shadows on the otherwise...

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2009-04-30 16:10:00

Scientists believe that ice volcanoes observed on Saturn's moon Enceladus may stem from a sea beneath its surface, which could support theories for the existence of extraplanetary life. Since the Cassini spacecraft arrived on Saturn four years ago, scientists have been trying to determine what is causing Enceladus' volcanoes to spew ice. "What we have seen over the course of our travels has informed, moved and amazed us," planetary scientist Carolyn Porco, who heads Cassini's imaging team,...

2008-12-15 14:31:00

SAN FRANCISCO, Dec. 15 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The closer scientists look at Saturn's small moon Enceladus, the more they find evidence of an active world. The most recent flybys of Enceladus made by NASA's Cassini spacecraft have provided new signs of ongoing changes on and around the moon. The latest high-resolution images of Enceladus show signs that the south polar surface changes over time. (Logo: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20081007/38461LOGO) Close views of the southern...

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2008-12-15 15:05:00

The closer scientists look at Saturn's small moon Enceladus, the more they find evidence of an active world. The most recent flybys of Enceladus made by NASA's Cassini spacecraft have provided new signs of ongoing changes on and around the moon. The latest high-resolution images of Enceladus show signs that the south polar surface changes over time. Close views of the southern polar region, where jets of water vapor and icy particles spew from vents within the moon's distinctive "tiger...

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2008-11-26 14:55:00

A team of astronomers said on Thursday that supersonic plumes of gas and dust shooting off one of Saturn's moons suggest strong evidence of liquid water, a key building block of life. The new discovery adds to the growing push to further explore the moon Enceladus, as some believe it is one of the solar system's most compelling places for potential life. NASA astronomers estimated through images from the Cassini probe that the mysterious plumes shooting from Enceladus' icy terrain contained...

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2008-08-14 22:20:00

PASADENA, Calif. -- In a feat of interplanetary sharpshooting, NASA's Cassini spacecraft has pinpointed precisely where the icy jets erupt from the surface of Saturn's geologically active moon Enceladus. New carefully targeted pictures reveal exquisite details in the prominent south polar "tiger stripe" fractures from which the jets emanate. The images show the fractures are about 300 meters (980 feet) deep, with V-shaped inner walls. The outer flanks of some of the fractures show extensive...


Word of the Day
abrosia
  • Wasting away as a result of abstinence from food.
The word 'abrosia' comes from a Greek roots meaning 'not' and 'eating'.