A daily dose of Inspiration for you!

Today’s source of Inspiration is exploration and knowledge gained through exploration.  Our universe is filled with places to explore and much to learn.  Saturn is the sixth planet from our Sun.

 

Saturn is a giant gas planet and the second-largest planet in our Solar System.  It is 95 times bigger than Earth.  It has approximately one-eighth of the density of Earth.  Saturn is probably best known for its ring system.  There are nine continuous main rings and three discontinuous arcs.  They are made of ice particles and some rocky debris and dust.  There are at least 62 moons, 53 of which have official names, orbiting Saturn.  In the rings are also hundreds of moonlets.  Titan is Saturn’s largest moon, it is larger than the planet Mercury, and is the only moon known to have a substantial atmosphere.

 

Saturn is made of primarily hydrogen and helium.  It is thought to have a solid core.  Models are showing Saturn’s interior similar to Jupiter’s interior.  The core is thought to be surrounded by a thick liquid metallic hydrogen layer, then a liquid layer of helium-saturated molecular hydrogen that transitions to gas.  The outmost layer consists of gas.  Trace amounts of ammonia, acetylene, and other chemical compounds are, also, present in Saturn’s atmosphere.  Winds on Saturn are the second fastest on a planet in our Solar System.

 

It takes well over 10,000 days for Saturn to revolve around the Sun.  Saturn rotates at different rates.  The rotation period is approximately 10 and 1/2 hours.

 

There have been three phases in the observation and exploration of Saturn.  In ancient times, observation was with the naked eye and progressed to telescopic observations.  A more modern phase has been visitation by spacecraft, orbits or flybys.  Recently, observations continue from Earth or Earth-orbiting observatories and the Cassini orbiter at Saturn.  The first flyby of Saturn was by Pioneer 11 in 1979.  We have learned a lot about Saturn since and more missions are planned.

 

Saturn is inspirational and learning about Saturn is inspirational.  Be inspired!  Have a bright day!

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