NASA’s Cassini mission to Saturn may have came to a fiery end in September, but observations made by the spacecraft in its final months still have plenty to teach us about the mysteries of the ringed planet.
Case in point: A new study finds that the electrically charged region of Saturn’s atmosphere, known as the ionosphere, is significantly more complex and variable than scientists thought.
Cassini’s instruments also found evidence that the ionosphere is strongly affected by shadows cast by the rings. In addition, it might also interact with microscopic ice particles from the rings themselves in a phenomenon known as “
Kennedy Space Center - The Rocket Garden at the Kennedy Space Center Visitors Complex at first light.(red huber/orlando sentinel) ORG XMIT: 9578