NASA is calling it “The Rose.” By any other name, it’s a mammoth storm on Saturn’s north pole. Its eye spans an estimated 1,250 miles — 20 times the size of an average hurricane’s eye on Earth. Winds in the Saturn storm’s eye wall are believed to be four times as fast.
The stunning image of the spinning vortex was given “false colors” to emphasize low clouds (in red) versus high clouds (in green). NASA estimates that the clouds at the outer edge are moving at up to 330 miles per hour.
“The hurricane swirls inside a large, mysterious, six-sided weather pattern known as the hexagon,” NASA says. The space agency’s analysts say the storm has likely been swirling in the same spot for years — because it’s on a pole, there’s nowhere for it to drift. (NPR)
What you’re seeing there is the infrared image taken of the moon Mimas in 2010 and the other is of the moon Tethys taken this year. The red and yellow areas show the warmest places on the moon.
“Finding a second Pac-Man in the Saturn system tells us that the processes creating these Pac-Men are more widespread than previously thought,” said Carly Howett, the lead author of a paper explaining the findings, which was published in the journal Icarus. (The Two-Way : NPR)
This raw image, one of the latest from the Cassini spacecraft, was taken on Oct. 7, 2011, and received on Earth Oct. 8, 2011. The camera was pointing toward Saturn at approximately 2,137,609 kilometers away. (NASA)
MOON BOON A quintet of Saturn’s moons come together in the Cassini spacecraft’s field of view. Janus, 111 miles across, is on the far left; Pandora (50 miles across) orbits between the A ring and the thin F ring near the middle of the image; Enceladus (313 miles across) appears above the center of the image; Rhea (949 miles across) is bisected by the right edge of the image; and finally Mimas (246 miles across) can be seen beyond Rhea also on the right side of the image. (Photo: NASA via the Telegraph)