Saturn Stuff - University of Florida

Saturn Stuff - University of Florida

The Jovian Planets, Part II Saturn SATURN The God of Agriculture Physical Data Diameter: 119,871 km (9.41 Dearth)

Mass: 5.69x1029 g (95.1 Mearth) Density: 0.70 g/cm3 (lighter than water!) Rotation Period: 10.66 hours Tilt of Axis: 26.7o Surface Temperature: 103 K (-274o F) Physical Data

Orbital Semi-Major Axis: 9.54 AU Orbital Period: 29.46 years Orbital Inclination: 2.5o Orbital Eccentricity: 0.056 Surface Gravity: 1.17 Earth gravity Satellites: 60 as of 2011

Magnetic Field: yes Saturns Interior ATMOSPHERE Outer three layers are similar to Jupiters The exact composition of the

core of Saturn is still unknown LIQUID MOLECULAR HYDROGEN METALLIC HYDROGEN ICE? ROCK? Saturns Atmosphere

94% Hydrogen 6% Helium Small amounts of: Methane Ammonia Phosphine Ethane Acetylene Saturns Atmosphere CLOUDS: Composed of methane and ammonia

Saturn is surrounded by an orange haze which masks the cloud -top features Saturns belts are therefore less noticeable False color image shows Saturns bands Saturns Atmosphere WINDS: Unlike Jupiter, all go in the same direction

(east) The equatorial jet reaches speeds of 1,100 mph! (Fastest winds on Jupiter are 335 mph) Saturns Atmosphere FEATURES: Ovals - cyclonic features like Great Red

Spot on Jupiter They dont last long Biggest ovals seen on Saturn are only 1/10 as big as the Great Red Spot The White Spot of 1994 Saturns Atmosphere Hot Surface Temperature: Like Jupiter, Saturn radiates 2.5x as much heat as it receives from the Sun Saturn is two times farther away from the Sun

than Jupiter, and receives 1/4 as much sun light, so Saturns interior is less hot Saturns internal heat is due to heavy element diffusing toward the interior Saturns Magnetic Field Detected by Pioneer spacecraft Between the size of Earth and Jupiters magnetic field (0.5 Gauss)

Magnetic axis is almost aligned with rotation axis (0.7o tilt) Saturns Rotation Periods Differential rotator like Jupiter Rotation Period is 10h02m at equator Rotation Period is 1 hour longer at 60 o

latitude Radio Period: 10h39m22s Spin so fast, Saturn is very oblate (flat) Saturns Ring System There is a gap between the A and B ring called Cassinis

Division Ring particles are made of mostly ice Average particle size is about 10 meters CASSINIS DIVISION SATURN E G

F A B C D Saturns Ring System Spokes: Magnetically levitated dust which is rotating

with the magnetic field This dust is about the size of cigar smoke m Saturns Ring System Shepherd Satellites: Small moons in the rings gravitationally interact with

wandering ring particles and return them to the ring, thus preserving the ring. Shepherd Satellites Prometheus and Pandora sheperding the F ring Saturns Moons A total of 18 have been discovered thus far Co-Orbital Satellites: As a trailing co-orbital satellite overtakes the leading satellite, they gravitational

forces make the moons trade places 1 2 3 4 5 Saturns Moons

TITAN: Saturns largest moon Only 2% smaller than Ganymede, so is the second largest moon in the solar system Has a thick nitrogen atmosphere Surface Pressure: 1.6 atm Saturns Moons MIMAS: Has an impact crater that is 1/3 the diameter

of the satellite Biggest impact Mimas could have taken and still survived Saturns Moons PHEOBE: Discovered in 1898 First retrograde satellite known in the solar system Most likely a captured satellite Saturns outermost

moon Saturns Moons Iapetus: Is sweeping dark dust from Pheobe Like most moon it is in synchronous rotation Its leading face is therefore 5x dimmer than its trailing face Saturns Moons Hyperion:

Only satellite in the solar system that is not in synchronous orbit Not spherical It is the sixteenth moon out and is 286 km in diameter

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