Saturday, July 4, 2015

Orbiting moons around Saturn

IR-RGB image of Saturn taken on June 10th 2015 at 20:42UT

This image shows 3 of the 62 moons orbiting Saturn that were visible on the night of June 10th from the Observatory.

The upper faint spot on the right side of Saturn is Enceladus, while on bottom left is Tetyhs and lower right is Dione.

Enceladus is covered with water ice. The Cassini mission showed that during a close flyby on July 14, 2005, Cassini's cosmic dust analyzer directly measured that Enceladus' south pole is spewing tiny ice grains that are being taken up into the expansive E-ring of Saturn. Cassini's magnetometer discovered an atmosphere around Enceladus, evidence that gases may be originating from the moon's surface or interior.  There is also a possibility that liquid water is present under the ice sheet layer.

The ongoing Cassini mission sent images of Dione showing it to have a rugged and fractured landscape.

Similar observations made on the same can be viewed here.

Comments are welcome.

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