dec 112013
 
Life on the Moons of Jupiter and Saturn through Panspermia?

  A new study suggests the possibility of transfer of life from the inner Solar System to the moons orbiting Jupiter and Saturn, although very rare, cannot be ruled out. A comparison portrait of Jupiter’s four Galilean moons Io, Europa, Ganymede, and Callisto, each with different characteristics. (In this image composite, Jupiter is not at [continue reading]

mei 032013
 
Huge Hurricane at Saturn’s North Pole Found

  The international Cassini spacecraft has found a powerful hurricane at Saturn’s north pole, surrounded by the curious rotating hexagonal band of clouds. Spectacular close-up view of Saturn’s north-pole hurricane, as seen by the international Cassini spacecraft, revealing the intricate detail of cloud formations in this dynamic feature. The images were captured by Cassini from [continue reading]

apr 102013
 
Rain is Falling from Saturn’s Rings

  Astronomers using the W. M. Keck Observatory tracked the “rain” of charged water particles into the atmosphere of Saturn and found the extent of the ring-rain is far greater, and falls across larger areas of the planet, than previously thought. The work reveals the rain influences the composition and temperature structure of parts of Saturn’s [continue reading]

mrt 072013
 
Gas Giant Planets Can Handle It All

  New theoretical modeling by Carnegie’s Alan Boss provides clues to how the gas giant planets in our Solar System—Jupiter and Saturn—might have formed and evolved. His work was published recently by The Astrophysical Journal. Jupiter, the largest planet — a gas giant — in our Solar System. Image Credit: NASA/JPL/U.S. Geological Survey New stars are [continue reading]

okt 182012
 
Giant Impacts Explain the Unusual Moons of Saturn

  Among the oddities of the outer Solar System are the middle-sized moons of Saturn, a half-dozen icy bodies dwarfed by Saturn’s massive moon Titan. According to a new model for the origin of the Saturn system, these middle-sized moons were spawned during giant impacts in which several major satellites merged to form Titan. Saturn’s [continue reading]

sep 112012
 
Saturn's Moon Mimas Creates Clumps in the Ring System

  Clumpy particles in Saturn’s B-ring provide stark contrast to the delicately ordered ringlets seen in the rest of this view presented by the Cassini spacecraft. Saturn’s B-ring is the largest and brightest of the gas giant’s rings, the outer portion of which is seen in the left side of this image. Ring clumps and strands [continue reading]