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Cassini

Space

Cassini glimpses the dark eye of Saturn's south polar storm

The Cassini spacecraft has captured a stunningly detailed view of the "dark eye" of Saturn's vast south polar vortex, a feature so large that it could comfortably swallow planet Earth. The vista is a composite shot comprised of two separate images captured in July 2008 from a distance of roughly 392,000 km (243,578 miles) from the gas giant.Read More

Space

Starlight observation of Enceladus' plumes uncovers fresh mystery

NASA's Cassini spacecraft has used the light of a faraway star to observe the vast cryovolcanic eruption taking place on Saturn's moon Enceladus. Captured at a distant point in its orbit relative to the gas giant, Enceladus' tiger stripe vents behaved in a way that will force astronomers to rethink their current models regarding the enigmatic moon's internal plumbing.Read More

Space

Study of Titan sea reveals unexpected composition

We've known for more than a decade that the largest of Saturn's moons plays hosts to lakes and seas of liquid hydrocarbons, but the exact make-up of these reservoirs has remained a mystery. Until now that is, with scientists from the European Space Agency (ESA) using data from eight years worth Cassini flybys to confirm that Ligeia Mare – one of the largest seas on the moon – is made up largely of liquid methane.Read More

Space

Cassini image captures phantom rings

NASA's Cassini spacecraft has captured a stunning, and seemingly impossible view of Saturn's iconic ring system intersecting with a second set of phantom rings. The image was snapped using the probe's narrow-angle camera on Feb. 11, 2016.Read More

Space

Cassini detects alien dust particles

NASA's Cassini orbiter has become the first spacecraft to determine the composition of dust particles originating outside of our solar system. The discovery grants a rare insight regarding the processes that may be occurring in the interstellar medium.Read More

Space

Cassini orbit not influenced by phantom planet

NASA has released a statement casting doubt on a theory put forward by French astronomers that analyzed anomalies in the trajectory of the Cassini spacecraft in order to determine the general location of the unconfirmed solar system body "Planet Nine."Read More

Space

Tidal forces pinpointed as catalyst for Enceladus' eruptions

Researchers from the University of Chicago and Princeton University have generated a new computer model that successfully simulates the mechanism driving impressive geyser eruptions observed taking place on the Saturnian moon Enceladus. The geysers have been active since Cassini first observed the phenomena in 2005, and were likely erupting long before the probe entered orbit around Saturn.Read More

Space

Cassini prepares for dramatic climax to its mission

NASA's Cassini spacecraft recently completed the second of five planned burns designed to maneuver the spacecraft out of Saturn's ring plane, and into a polar orbit. The move is being made in preparation for the final phase of Cassini's mission, which will see the spacecraft perform a series of daring orbits, maximizing the probe's scientific output prior to the mission's termination.Read More

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