Located between the rings of Saturn is a collection of mini-moons that NASA's Cassini spacecraft passed in 2017
On Thursday, astronomers and scientists for the first time described their moon discoveries in the American journal Science.
Pan, Daphne, Atlas, Pandora, and Epimetheus, each measure between eight and 116 km in diameter. They are either round, shaped like flying saucers or resemble potatoes.
They are dug into the gaps separating the rings of the planet.
Cassini spent 1
In her final year of work, she slipped through the rings sending data back to Earth until it became dark on September 13, 2017, 20 years after it was released.
About 4,000 scientific papers were published on the findings Cassini and Cassini's knowledge are far from dry.
"I want to work for at least another decade for these things," said Bonnie Buriati, a planetary astronomer from the US Space Agency at the Jet Laboratory in California.
Data captured by Cassini's tools are still being evaluated. The study, published Thursday, is just a review of the findings ahead.
But the study reinforces the dominant theory that the rings and moons of Saturn flow from the same heavenly body that crashes as a result of a collision. 19659002] The Moon Rings
"The largest fragments become the nucleus of these ring moons," explains Buriati, a 33-year-old veteran of NASA. clusters of the rings continue to accumulate – that is what we saw closely, the accumulation of the moon's ring material. "
More than three dozen co-authors
More than three dozen co-authors From the United States, Britain, Germany and Italy have worked on the study published on Thursday, a remarkable collaboration, is changing, science is provoked by disagreements, "she said.
The question that astronomers is corroding is to find out how old the rings are.
A study published in January based on Cassini's data came to the conclusion , that they are relatively young – somewhere between 100 million and one billion years.
But other models and methods suggest a different answer. never cut and dry – you will never get your final answer, "said Buran.
FOLLOW News24 on Twitter