Monday, February 7, 2011

Planet Saturn - The latest interesting facts

Saturn's second largest moon, Rhea, is icy. According to the results from the NASA's Cassini spacecraft the oxygen appears to arise when Saturn's magnetic field rotates over Rhea. However, oxygen at Rhea's surface is estimated to be about 5 trillion times less dense than what we have at Earth.

The scientists have in 2010 detected the cyclon on Saturn which in that time was lasting for more than 5 years. The size of this enormous cyclone is similar in size to the European continent, and the diameter of its vortex is larger than 4,000 km.

It is very difficult to measure a day on Saturn because of enormous clouds of plasma that periodically bloom around Saturn and move around the planet. Scientists are still not sure how long a Saturn day is.

The heated plasma is trapped on the magnetic field around the planet Saturn. This magnetic field rotates at speeds of about 100 kilometers per second (200,000 mph).

According to observations by NASA's Cassini spacecraft Saturn emitted gradually less energy each year from 2005 to 2009.

Saturn's moon Titan has a surface covered with organic material and an atmosphere whose chemical composition harkens back to an early Earth. It also has a hydrological cycle similar to the one on Earth, though Titan's cycle depends on methane and ethane instead than water.

Titan is at this moment the only moon in the solar system with an atmosphere. Atmosphere on Titan is ten times denser than the atmosphere of Earth. Titan's atmosphere does not include nitrogen and oxygen like Earth's, but rather nitrogen and methane.

Lakes and seas on Titan are very likely filled with liquid methane or ethane.