Latest Moons of Saturn Stories

2010-11-02 06:50:00

Scientists believe they finally understand why one of the most dynamic regions in Saturn's rings has such an irregular and varying shape, thanks to images captured by NASA's Cassini spacecraft. And the answer, published online November 1 in the Astronomical Journal, is this: The rings are behaving like a miniature version of our own Milky Way galaxy. This new insight, garnered from images of Saturn's most massive ring, the B ring, may answer another long-standing question: What causes the...

2010-10-20 09:35:00

Taking a long-weekend road trip, NASA's Cassini spacecraft successfully glided near nine Saturnian moons, sending back a stream of raw images as mementos of its adrenaline-fueled expedition. The spacecraft sent back particularly intriguing images of the moons Dione and Rhea. The Dione and Rhea pictures are the highest-resolution views yet of parts of their surfaces. The views of the southern part of Dione's leading hemisphere (the part of the moon that faces forward in its orbit around...

2010-10-08 06:31:49

Scientists using data from NASA's Cassini spacecraft have learned that distinctive, colorful bands and splotches embellish the surfaces of Saturn's inner, mid-size moons. The reddish and bluish hues on the icy surfaces of Mimas, Enceladus, Tethys, Dione and Rhea appear to be the aftermath of bombardments large and small. A paper based on the findings was recently published online in the journal Icarus. In it, scientists describe prominent global patterns that trace the trade routes for...

2010-10-07 10:15:00

The rings of Saturn could have formed after a moon the size of Titan crashed into the developing planet, a researcher from the Southwest Research Institute (SWRI) in Boulder suggested earlier this week. Speaking during a meeting of the American Astronomical Society's Division for Planetary Science in Pasadena, California, SWRI researcher Robin Canup suggested that the satellite likely had a mantle made of ice and a rocky core, and that tidal forces might have dislodged chunks of the mantle...

2010-10-07 07:35:00

Saturn's icy moon Enceladus should not be one of the most promising places in our solar system to look for extraterrestrial life. Instead, it should have frozen solid billions of years ago. Located in the frigid outer solar system, it's too far from the sun to have oceans of liquid water -- a necessary ingredient for known forms of life -- on its surface. Some worlds, like Mars or Jupiter's moon Europa, give hints that they might harbor liquid water beneath their surfaces. Mars is about 4,200...

2010-09-28 10:17:02

Turning a midsummer night's dream into reality, NASA's Cassini spacecraft began its new mission extension -- the Cassini Solstice Mission -- on Monday. The mission extension will take Cassini a few months past Saturn's northern summer solstice (or midsummer) through September 2017. It will enable scientists to study seasonal changes and other long-term weather changes on Saturn and its moons. Cassini had arrived just after Saturn's northern winter solstice in 2004, and the extension continues...

2010-09-24 11:25:14

A new movie and images showing Saturn's shimmering aurora over a two-day period are helping scientists understand what drives some of the solar system's most impressive light shows. The movie and images are part of a new study that, for the first time, extracts auroral information from the entire catalogue of Saturn images taken by the visual and infrared mapping spectrometer instrument (VIMS) aboard NASA's Cassini spacecraft. These images and preliminary results are being presented by Tom...

2010-09-24 06:19:39

NASA's Cassini spacecraft will swing high over Saturn's moon Titan on Friday, Sept. 24, taking a long, sustained look at the hazy moon. At closest approach, Cassini will fly within 8,175 kilometers (5,080 miles) above the hazy moon's surface. This flyby is the first in a series of high-altitude Titan flybys for Cassini over the next year and a half. Cassini's composite infrared spectrometer instrument will be probing Titan's stratosphere to learn more about its vertical structure as the...

2010-09-22 14:15:00

How do scientists decide what images the Cassini spacecraft should take of Saturn and its moons? Students have the opportunity to learn the scientific process when they enter Cassini's Scientist for a Day Essay Contest. The contest is for students in grades 5 through 12. The deadline for entries is Wed., Oct. 27, 2010, at noon Pacific Time. Students will be presented with three scientifically interesting locations around Saturn or its moons for the Cassini spacecraft to capture. They will...

2010-09-22 10:24:13

Titan's northern hemisphere is set for mainly fine spring weather, with polar skies clearing since the equinox in August last year.  Cassini's VIMS instrument has been monitoring clouds on Titan continuously since the spacecraft went into orbit around Saturn.  Now, a team led by S©bastien Rodriguez (AIM laboratory - Universit© Paris Diderot) has used more than 2000 VIMS images to create the first long-term study of Titan's weather that includes the equinox, using...

Latest Moons of Saturn Reference Libraries

2004-10-19 04:45:44

Lagrangian Point -- In Lagrangian mechanics, a Lagrangian point (or L-point) is one of five positions in space where the gravitational fields of two bodies of substantial but differing mass combine to form a point at which a third body of negligible mass would be stationary relative to the two bodies. Bodies at the L-point will not move relative to the parent bodies if they are not perturbed by other gravitational forces. They are sometimes also referred to as libration points. The...

2004-10-19 04:45:41

Saturn's moon Phoebe -- Phoebe is the outermost of Saturn's known moons. Phoebe is almost 4 times more distant from Saturn than its nearest neighbor (Iapetus). It was discovered by William Henry Pickering in 1898. Most of Saturn's moons have very bright surfaces, but Phoebe's albedo is very low (.06), as dark as lampblack. All of Saturn's moons except for Phoebe and Iapetus orbit very nearly in the plane of Saturn's equator. Phoebe's orbit is retrograde, inclined almost 175, and is...

2004-10-19 04:45:41

Saturn's moon Titan -- Titan is the planet Saturn's largest moon. It is larger than either of the planets Mercury or Pluto and is the second-largest moon in the solar system after Ganymede (it was originally thought to be slightly larger than Ganymede, but recent observations have shown that its thick atmosphere caused overestimation of its diameter). Titan was discovered on March 25, 1655 by the Dutch astronomer Christian Huygens, making it one of the first non-terrestrial moons to be...

2004-10-19 04:45:41

Saturn's moon Rhea -- Rhea is the second largest moon of Saturn. It was discovered in 1672 by Giovanni Cassini. Rhea is an icy body with a density of about 1.24 gm/cm3. This low density indicates that it has a rocky core taking up less than one-third of the moon's mass with the rest composed of water-ice. Rhea's features resemble those of Dione, with dissimilar leading and trailing hemispheres, suggesting similar composition and histories. The temperature on Rhea is -174°C in direct...

2004-10-19 04:45:41

Saturn's moon Helene -- Helene is a moon of Saturn, discovered by Laques and Lecacheux in 1980 from ground-based observations. It is co-oribtal with Dione and located in its leading Lagrangian point (L4) and hence is sometimes referred to as "Dione B". ----- Orbital radius: 377,400 km Diameter: 33 km (36 x 32 x 30) Mass: Unknown Orbital period: 2.7369 days Orbital inclination: 0.2 ----- NASA Learn more on this topic from eLibrary here:

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'Baudekin' seems to be an alternative form of 'baldachin,' from the Italian 'Baldacco,' Baghdad, the city where the material was made.