December 10th, 2007

Saturn's rings

Astro-image of the day: "Flying saucers" attack Saturn!

Click the image to see the story.

Well, not quite. But this is a fascinating thing: Some of Saturn's moons - those that orbit within the confines of the rings - are encircled by these bizarro rings of their own. Turns out that instead of hyperdrive generators for alien spacecraft, those are accretion disks piled onto the moons from ring matter. Like this:

Click the image to see the story.


PS: Speaking of icy rings, where is our promised Ice Armageddon here in Kansas? So far lots of freezing rain, but the power remains on. No rampaging mobs of anarchists, no firefights in the streets as people fight for the last remaining drop of fuel to burn in an effort to stay warm, not even a single frozen zombie. *sigh* We never get any real end-of-the-world scenarios here.