Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Cassini Flies By Saturn's Tortured Moon Mimas

Date:
August 9, 2005
Source:
Space Science Institute
Summary:
On its recent close flyby of Mimas (MY-muss), the Cassini spacecraft found the Saturnian moon looking battered and bruised, with a surface that may be the most heavily cratered in the Saturn system.

False color images of Saturn's moon, Mimas, reveal variation in either the composition or texture across its surface.
Credit: NASA/JPL/Space Science Institute

On its recent close flyby of Mimas (MY-muss), the Cassini spacecraftfound the Saturnian moon looking battered and bruised, with a surfacethat may be the most heavily cratered in the Saturn system.

The Aug. 2 flyby of Saturn's 'Death Star' moon returned eye-catchingimages of its most distinctive feature, the spectacular 140-kilometerdiameter (87-mile) landslide-filled Hershel crater. Numerous rounded andworn-out craters, craters within other craters and long groovesreminiscent of those seen on asteroids are also seen in the new images.

The new Mimas images are available at http://ciclops.org,http://saturn.jpl.nasa.gov, and http://www.nasa.gov/cassini. Alsoavailable is an approach movie showing Mimas, and a zoom and pan acrossthe surface of one of the highest resolution images.

The closest images show Mimas, measuring 397 kilometers (247 miles)across, in the finest detail yet seen. One dramatic view acquired nearCassini's closest approach shows the moon against the backdrop ofSaturn's rings. A false color composite image reveals a region in blueand red of presumably different composition or texture just west of, andperhaps related to, the Hershel crater.

Scientists hope that analysis of the images will tell them how manycrater-causing impactors have coursed through the Saturn system, andwhere those objects might have come from. There is also the suspicion,yet to be investigated, that the grooves, first discovered by NASA'sVoyager spacecraft but now seen up close, are related to the giantimpact that caused the biggest crater of all, Herschel, on the oppositeside of the moon.

###

The Cassini-Huygens mission is a cooperative project of NASA, theEuropean Space Agency and the Italian Space Agency. The Jet PropulsionLaboratory, a division of the California Institute of Technology inPasadena, manages the Cassini-Huygens mission for NASA's Science MissionDirectorate, Washington, D.C. The Cassini orbiter and its two onboardcameras were designed, developed and assembled at JPL. The imaging teamconsists of scientists from the US, England, France, and Germany. Theimaging operations center and team leader (Dr. C. Porco) are based atthe Space Science Institute in Boulder, Colo.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Space Science Institute. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Space Science Institute. "Cassini Flies By Saturn's Tortured Moon Mimas." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 9 August 2005. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/08/050805175948.htm>.
Space Science Institute. (2005, August 9). Cassini Flies By Saturn's Tortured Moon Mimas. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 21, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/08/050805175948.htm
Space Science Institute. "Cassini Flies By Saturn's Tortured Moon Mimas." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/08/050805175948.htm (accessed October 21, 2014).

Share This



More Space & Time News

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Comet Siding Spring Grazes Mars' Atmosphere

Comet Siding Spring Grazes Mars' Atmosphere

Newsy (Oct. 19, 2014) A comet from the farthest reaches of the solar system passed extremely close to Mars this weekend, giving astronomers a rare opportunity to study it. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Latin America Launches Communications Satellite

Latin America Launches Communications Satellite

AFP (Oct. 17, 2014) Argentina launches a home-built satellite, a first for Latin America. It will ride a French-made Ariane 5 rocket into orbit, and will provide cell phone, digital TV, Internet and data services to the lower half of South America. Duration: 00:41 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
This Week @ NASA, October 17, 2014

This Week @ NASA, October 17, 2014

NASA (Oct. 17, 2014) Power spacewalk, MAVEN’s “First Light”, Hubble finds extremely distant galaxy and more... Video provided by NASA
Powered by NewsLook.com
Saturn's 'Death Star' Moon Might Have A Hidden Ocean

Saturn's 'Death Star' Moon Might Have A Hidden Ocean

Newsy (Oct. 17, 2014) The smallest of Saturn's main moons, Mimas, wobbles as it orbits. Research reveals it might be due to a global ocean underneath its icy surface. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Space & Time

Matter & Energy

Computers & Math

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins