Posts Tagged ‘Saturn’

On the 19th of July, 2013, the spacecraft called Cassini took about 20 minutes out of its mission at Saturn to look far, far away – 898 million miles back in the direction it had come, held itself very still… and took some inspiring pictures of its home…

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From NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory at Cal Tech’s news release… comes this snippet:

“We can’t see individual continents or people in this portrait of Earth, but this pale blue dot is a succinct summary of who we were on July 19,” said Linda Spilker, Cassini project scientist, at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif. “Cassini’s picture reminds us how tiny our home planet is in the vastness of space, and also testifies to the ingenuity of the citizens of this tiny planet to send a robotic spacecraft so far away from home to study Saturn and take a look-back photo of Earth.”

Nicely put, Ms. Spilker…

Back in 1990, the Voyager 1 spacecraft also took Earth’s picture as it bid farewell to the solar system. A truly amazing image it is… one that prompted Carl Sagan to offer some thoughts on the implications of what thereafter became known as The Pale Blue Dot.

Here is that image, from 4 billion miles away – followed by Dr. Sagan’s words…

Pale Blue Dot by Voyager 1 1990 via nprImage source, a fine article on NPR.

“Look again at that dot. That’s here. That’s home. That’s us. On it everyone you love, everyone you know, everyone you ever heard of, every human being who ever was, lived out their lives. The aggregate of our joy and suffering, thousands of confident religions, ideologies, and economic doctrines, every hunter and forager, every hero and coward, every creator and destroyer of civilization, every king and peasant, every young couple in love, every mother and father, hopeful child, inventor and explorer, every teacher of morals, every corrupt politician, every “superstar,” every “supreme leader,” every saint and sinner in the history of our species lived there-on a mote of dust suspended in a sunbeam.

The Earth is a very small stage in a vast cosmic arena. Think of the endless cruelties visited by the inhabitants of one corner of this pixel on the scarcely distinguishable inhabitants of some other corner, how frequent their misunderstandings, how eager they are to kill one another, how fervent their hatreds. Think of the rivers of blood spilled by all those generals and emperors so that, in glory and triumph, they could become the momentary masters of a fraction of a dot.

Our posturings, our imagined self-importance, the delusion that we have some privileged position in the Universe, are challenged by this point of pale light. Our planet is a lonely speck in the great enveloping cosmic dark. In our obscurity, in all this vastness, there is no hint that help will come from elsewhere to save us from ourselves.

The Earth is the only world known so far to harbor life. There is nowhere else, at least in the near future, to which our species could migrate. Visit, yes. Settle, not yet. Like it or not, for the moment the Earth is where we make our stand.

It has been said that astronomy is a humbling and character-building experience. There is perhaps no better demonstration of the folly of human conceits than this distant image of our tiny world. To me, it underscores our responsibility to deal more kindly with one another, and to preserve and cherish the pale blue dot, the only home we’ve ever known.”

― Carl Sagan, Pale Blue Dot: A Vision of the Human Future in Space

Inspiring times we live in. I still hope someday that we can heed the words above… just imagine what could be done… what wonders could be found,,, how rich our lives could be.

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Planetfall, Enceladus, vents

Space.com – Enceladus vents water into space from its south polar region. The moon is lit by the Sun on the left, and backlit by the vast reflecting surface of its parent planet to the right. Icy crystals from these plumes are likely the source of Saturn’s nebulous E ring, within which Enceladus orbits. Mosaic composite photograph. Cassini, December 25, 2009.
CREDIT: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Michael Benson/Kinetikon Pictures. © All rights reserved.

From Saturn Moon Enceladus Eyed for Sample-Return Mission at Space.com:

SAN FRANCISCO — Scientists are developing a mission concept that would snag icy particles from Saturn’s moon Enceladus and return them to Earth, where they could be analyzed for signs of life.

The spacecraft would fly through the icy plume blasted into space by geysers near Enceladus’ south pole, then send the collected particles back to our planet in a return capsule. Enceladus may be capable of supporting life, and the flyby sample-return mission would bring pieces from its depths to Earth at a reasonable price, researchers said.

“This is really the low-hanging fruit” of sample-return missions, said study leader Peter Tsou of Sample Exploration Systems in La Canada, Calif., who presented the idea here Wednesday (Dec. 5) at the annual fall meeting of the American Geophysical Union. “It would be a shame not to pick it.”

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If the mission is approved, it could probably be ready to launch by 2020, Tsou added. Samples from Enceladus’ plume would make it to Earth about 14 years later.

Enceladus is a great candidate for sample-return, Tsou said. Its geyser-blasted particles are fresh, having come right out of the moon’s subsurface ocean. The mission can be done without landing on and re-launching from another world, two costly and complicating extra steps. And Enceladus seems to have all the ingredients necessary to support life.

“That doesn’t mean life is there,” Tsou said. “But we want to find out.”

Well, dang, doc, I want to find out, too!

I mean, just think… !

Enceladus is an awesome place. Seriously, I have always had a gut feeling that there are critters there.

Too bad it will be so far off, man, seven long years… but

It would be awesome if a base could be established, robotic, no doubt, that would bore through the ice to the ocean below… and have streaming video. Should be able to sort out the streaming part by then, eh?

There’s a strange old post here from October ‘09 called The Critters Of Enceladus,

Ha! That was a fun one.

Here’s a pic…

Resident of Enceladus? image N00121336(crop) NASA/JPL

Resident of Enceladus? image N00121336(crop) NASA/JPL

shocking

Yes, indeed, Enceladus is a fine place to get real and tangible material to study.

Peace.

P.S. This was a draft from way back in January… sigh.

 

Lake on Titan by Cassini. (Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech and NASA/USGS)

A recent study finds that the lake known as Ontario Lacus on Saturn's moon Titan (left) bears striking similarity to a salt pan on Earth known as the Etosha Pan (right). (Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech and NASA/USGS)

Now this is pretty rad!

Seems the cycle of liquids on Titan works much the same as our water cycle.This is in a desert area and its quite flat and shallow. Cyclically it would fill up with liquid, drain and repeat… in this case, it seems… liquid hydrocarbons.

ScienceDaily (Apr. 20, 2012) — A new study analyzing data from NASA’s Cassini spacecraft suggests that the lake, known as Ontario Lacus, behaves most similarly to what we call a salt pan on Earth.

A group led by Thomas Cornet of the Université de Nantes, France, a Cassini associate, found evidence for long-standing channels etched into the lake bed within the southern boundary of the depression. This suggests that Ontario Lacus, previously thought to be completely filled with liquid hydrocarbons, could actually be a depression that drains and refills from below, exposing liquid areas ringed by materials like saturated sand or mudflats.

“We conclude that the solid floor of Ontario Lacus is most probably exposed in those areas,” said Cornet, whose paper appears in a recent issue of the journal Icarus.

These characteristics make Ontario Lacus very similar to the Etosha salt pan on Earth, which is a lake bed that fills with a shallow layer of water from groundwater levels that rise during the rainy season. This layer then evaporates and leaves sediments like tide marks showing the previous extent of the water.

“Some of the things we see happening in our own backyard are right there on Titan to study and learn from,” said Bonnie Buratti, a co-author and Cassini team member based at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif. “On Earth, salt pans tend to form in deserts where liquids can suddenly accumulate, so it appears the same thing is happening on Titan.“

And that is yet another thing to bolster the chances of finding critters out there. And what mind-blowing critters they’d be! As this lake fills and drains regularly with some juicy stuff, my vote is for carbon-based life swimmin’ around in there. As much of Titan is more concerned with elements other than carbon, though, there’s speculation that life based on other elements would likely be the critters of choice.

They’d be a bit different from us I’d imagine, being based on something other than carbon. This is by no means a new concept of course. There is some concern bubbling round in me brainpan regarding a thought on that.

Since carbon is all we know and posts at the forum cannot fathom how other substances would “work,” would we, then, have the innate ability to recognize something that is alive – but bears no quality other than being alive – that we have ever experienced before?

An excellent question.

Spotted this in a recent post at ATS which led to the source article at Science Daily.

Peace.

In this video, Warp Speed?, by Lunar Explorer Italia, a fascinating view is presented of something very strange indeed. It would appear to be an object of some sort moving at an apparently superluminal rate. This has been captured for us by the Cassini probe that’s hanging out over by Saturn. I keep stopping and playing back the first  third of the clip, as in the last two thirds our friends at Lunar Explorer Italia have added in visual aids to help us see where the action is… which is okay of course but I think it distracts.

Anyway, it certainly does seem to pop over just as if it was a sci-fi star, doesn’t it? Damn… so… is this for real or an optical illusion or just two things happening coincidentally? Looks pretty real to me… and I don’t believe in coincidences. I do believe that there’s no reason I know of beyond the arrogance of science that says this can’t somehow be done. One needs to remember that this is out Saturn’s way and the field of view is pretty spectacularly large, so it’s not like a UFO popping about a few hundred feet here or there… or… maybe it is! I’m just sayin,’ it’s really moving a good way away. Most impressive. Leads to some interesting scenarios taking shape…

I would like to give a round of applause over to Italian phenomena research in general and Lunar Explorer Italia in particular, an they’ve given us some pretty spectacular stuff to contemplate for a good while now. Bravissimo.

It does seem, though, to me, that the farther out we go, the stranger things get.

I’ve included below in the blockquote the diatribe from the video description; translated here by the Google translator, so bear with it; mainly because it doesn’t seem to have anything to do with the video it’s attached to, it’s more of a somewhat scathing attack on the current state of the generally hoax laden and credulous state of present day UFOlogy. I find it refreshing and all and a good read, but I’m not sure they really meant to stick it up there with this video, as I was starting to say. It also provided the title to this post which I thought was wonderfully Gorightly-ish…

The cover-up on the UFO issue is necessary, but … no good!

Why not serve the best de-bunkers dell’Ufologia (understood as “Nova Scientia”) are the “ufologist” (and their blind – but enthusiastic – acolytes).

With their “revealing pictures” BUT ALWAYS blurred and indecipherable, with their new movies and illuminating, BUT ALMOST ALWAYS that are truncated on the most beautiful or that in the end prove to be the fruit (rotten) obvious “tarot” digital, with their dark and smoky on the “Conspiracy Theories” Overall “, even to the eyes and ears profane playing – most of the time (and in the best of circumstances) – as the terrible force logical (if not laughable like scemenze interplanetary ) …

And then the “Buffalo”!

The “destructive power” of the “Buffalo” is a true flagship for the ufologist 2000: think, for example, the crazy nonsense of footage on all’Astronave Buried on the Moon and “discovery” dall’Apollo 20 (a Mission – and I know the kids – never existed), or the “Marziano walking” in front of the Rover Spirit, or to filmini the silver beads that float in the sky, made by “famous” contacts (but that will never say , “talks “?!?) that, over time – but almost inevitably … – Are made in the bleak scene – or event even more sad and tragic – also appear as “possible genuine documents” which, however, are made entirely in vain, useless and unusable because of the mania for FAMA and notoriety ‘(and , on the other hand, the total lack of decency and sobriety ‘) shown by those who have achieved, both below and above that of the (already we could even do a bit of names and surnames, but we have no Beghi from the reality show).

The cover-up on the “UFO issue” is needed – given the hysteria that informs our Company (alleged) “Civil” – but not needed.
Do not serve them because they are “Believers” to destroy the evidence they gather and to ridicule the Matter growing.

Sin.
Shame because, to tell the truth, to throw a little light on the UFO issue “enough to use the documents that NASA will make available (but None or almost never goes to watch, because costs and FATIGUE WORK IT! ).

Well, we Researchers ( “naive”) of Lunar Explorer Italy, we have not tried to contact the “contact” and not to seek and / or analyze the movies made by those who “film the impossible.”
We have only used the NASA material available (knowing, of course, WHERE TO GO AND LOOK WHAT SEARCH) e. .. Voilà: UFO a gogo!

The Cover-up on the UFO issue is necessary, but … no good.

Sintanto that will include ufologist who seek visibility and notoriety but NOT TRUTH ‘(those who write in magazines and rivistine and write essays, books and libelli “illuminating “…) and sintanto that there will be around cialtroni and contacts (contacts that especially television – and not state – and the media, for promotion of exclusive … themselves) who are always ready to “reveal the truth to idiots (idiots = us, the masses,” all others except their “short), the Cover-up does not need.

The “secret” is well protected, as is found surrounded by tons of scemenze, buffaloes and narrated by Panzani Guitti and that on the credulity furbacchioni People have built their reputation and their image.
Sometimes, even their “Fortuna” (financial, of course).

Sin.

Shame because the truth, as Fox Mulder (X-Files) is not only “out there” (in Heaven and on Earth – and certainly in the Outer Space – if you know HOW to look for), but is also clear for all to see “.

One need only look to know WHERE and WHAT to look.

Just recently, in short.

Think about it for …

www.lunexit.it

www.lunarexplorer.it

Ha! That’s tellin’ ’em!

The team of wacky space boffins at Lunar Explorer Italia have done it again. This time, they’ve spied on some interlopers and holidaymakers at the pretty ball known as Saturn and specifically at it’s rings. Yeah, tourists are simply everywhere. 

These astronomers are quite serious, though. The video contains a variety of different objects crossing the camera’s view and a couple are seriously and spectacularly close as in the one below, which I snipped and made vertical (mainly so the post’d be taller, for blogular balance, you see…).

Unusual Object

You can snag huge versions of the gifs that the video is made out of at these two pages: trueplanets-334 and trueplanets-575. The pages are in Italian.

I remember that several years ago there were also some pretty cool shots made of some vast unidentified objects in this vicinity. Now I must find them… oh boy. Oh, what was that guy’s name? Perhaps this is a stop on the highway… 

Interesting that every time we’ve been there we spot some other traffic… interesting too that some scientists are starting to give a great effort in getting this sort of thing out. I think they’re just righteous dudes, but I suppose it could be one of those “disclosure” episodes. This I doubt, to be honest.

I like the big disc best. It has this timbre of organic to it… making it seem almost alive. The boxy one here is strange. Then again, what have we seen in space that isn’t just a little bit strange?