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Blue Skies on Saturn
Fast forward 100 years: You're an astronaut piloting an airplane in the upper atmosphere of Saturn. The gas giant has no solid surface to walk on and no seas to put a boat in. Exploring Saturn means flying, dipping in and out of strangely-colored clouds, racing through ring shadows. It's a totally alien world.
It's so alien that you start to feel homesick. So you do what they taught you in astronaut training. Take a deep breath, look up at the sunny blue sky and pretend to be back on Earth. Works every time!
Sunny blue skies ... on Saturn? It's true. NASA's Cassini spacecraft discovered them in 2005.
Originally posted by Umbrax
When I look at Saturn I often wonder what it would be like if Earth had rings. They are so beautiful
Originally posted by Aether
I thought the rings of planets were/are an unexplainable phenomena?
The rings of Saturn have puzzled astronomers ever since they were discovered by Galileo in 1610, during the first telescopic observations of the night sky. The puzzles have only increased since Voyagers 1 and 2 imaged the ring system extensively in 1980 and 1981. In addition to the images, several Voyager instruments observed occultations of the ring system with radial resolution as fine as 100 meters. The rings have been given letter names in the order of their discovery. The main rings are, working outward from the planet, known as C, B, and A. The Cassini Division is the largest gap in the rings and separates Rings B and A. In addition a number of fainter rings have been discovered more recently. The D Ring is exceedingly faint and closest to the planet. The F Ring is a narrow feature just outside the A Ring. Beyond that are two far fainter rings named G and E. The particles in Saturn's rings are composed primarily of water ice and range from microns to meters in size. The rings show a tremendous amount of structure on all scales; some of this structure is related to gravitational perturbations by Saturn's many moons, but much of it remains unexplained.