Astronomy Picture of the Day



Fresh Tiger Stripes on Saturn's Enceladus

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#79428 by @ 07.09.2005 00:00 - nach oben -
Fresh Tiger Stripes on Saturn's Enceladus


Explanation:
The tiger stripes on Saturn's moon Enceladus might be active.

Even today, they
may be spewing ice from the moon's icy interior into space,
creating a cloud of fine ice particles over the moon's South Pole
and creating Saturn's mysterious E-ring.

Recent evidence for this has come from the
robot Cassini spacecraft now orbiting
Saturn.

Cassini detected a marked increase in particle collisions
during its July flyby only 270 kilometers over a South Polar region of
Enceladus.

Pictured above,
a high resolution image of Enceladus is shown from the close flyby.

The unusual surface features dubbed
tiger stripes are visible on the left in false-color blue.

Why
Enceladus is active remains a mystery, as the neighboring moon
Mimas,
approximately the same size, appears
quite dead.




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