Cassini observations show that icy Dione is the latest small moon in the solar system possessing tantalizing clues of a liquid water ocean beneath its crust. NASA’s Cassini spacecraft has spotted many watery delights while orbiting Saturn’s system. There’s Enceladus’ 101 geysers, spewing fountains up from the ice and giving strong evidence of an ocean below. And there’s Titan, a strange, soupy, orange world that may also have an ocean somewhere under the surface.
The planet Saturn captures the imagination with its visually stunning rings. Close-up views from our robotic emissaries have revealed braided ring structures, dynamic weather systems that include a gigantic polar hexagon and a diverse family of moons — each with a distinctive appearance. One of the moons, Titan, features landscapes reminiscent of Earth — but with a twist. Continue reading Exploring the Realm of Saturn with Mobile Astronomy Apps
Exotic “dark hydrogen” lurks within giant planets such as Saturn and Jupiter, a new study suggests.
This strange form of hydrogen likely lies between the gaseous hydrogen in the clouds of gas giants such as Saturn and Jupiter and the liquid-metal hydrogen found in these planets’ cores, according to the study. Continue reading Mysterious ‘Dark Hydrogen’ May Lurk Within Giant Planets
I’m always being asked by those who have just purchased a telescope when and where they can see the planet Saturn.
Saturn, of course, is one of the most impressive objects visible in a telescope, chiefly due to its magnificent ring system. It is usually stated that Saturn is the most beautiful sight in the sky and if you have ever seen a photograph of it you will find that such a judgement is difficult to argue with. There is absolutely nothing else like it to be seen anywhere. Continue reading Moon Shares Encounter with Saturn Tonight
Amateur astronomers the world over enjoy regular views of Venus, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn and even elusive Mercury. The outer solar system planets Uranus and Neptune, however, are often overlooked. Certainly they are fainter, as they are further away, so there is much less detail to be seen. That said, they are worthy targets and should be seen as a challenge and not avoided. Continue reading Hunting Uranus, the Solar System’s Azure Ice Giant