Saturn's famous circles disappear, so enjoy them while they last. NASA scientists say that the circles – mostly made of ice and rock, some pieces that are as large as houses – will be completely disappeared in less than 100 million years.
The gravity of the planet draws the rings slowly slowly, making the eroded ice particles rain on the surface of the planet like "rain." The new research builds on a few hours of groundwater observations made from Hawaii in 2011. During the few hours seen, the total rainfall between 925 and 6000 pounds second, enough to fill an Olympic size pool within half an hour.
The rings remain suspended around Saturn, thanks to the push and pull action carefully – the planet's gravity is trying to remove the particles in, while at the same time their speed orbital trying to throw them out to space.
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The new study, led by Dr. James O'Donoghue of NASA's Planetary Laboratory Megnetosphere describes how the circle particles sometimes bring electrical inflation by sunlighting. Then Saturn's magnetic field pulls these particles raised, where they slip down the magnetic field lines and enter the atmosphere of the planet. Here, the particles evaporate and become foot of "rain rain" that glow in infrared light.
"Put Saturn rain is not completely different from Earth – water falls from the sky," NASA researcher, Dr. Jack Connerney, who offered this phenomenon in the 1986 study to Fox News. "But on Saturn, the rain contains pieces of circular material that are small (smaller than micron in size) and are charged electronically, so their proposal is controlled by the magnetic field. They must move along magnetic field lines, under the influence of gravity, central power, and magnetic mirror force, of the source location in the telephone plane (eg the inner edge of the circle B) to the inosffer and blanket. "
The study was published on Monday in the magazine Icarus.
According to Connerney, since the magnetic field of Saturn is axisymmetric, the rain is a circle that originates in a specific place in the "rainfall" rings down on a specific latitude on Saturn.
"When it's down, it has a dramatic effect on the inospheric and even leaves visual evidence – for example, narrow dark bands that stem from stratospheric summer, and there are fewer lights reflects sunlight, "he added. "James [O’Donoghue] and its runners discovered a variation in the ion density which, as anticipated, is the result of incredible material (water in the form of small particles). "
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If the rainfall seen from Hawaii in 2011 was a typical day on Saturn, O. Donoghue collected his team that the rings would be 300 million years. However, new data collected from the Cassini lines, which made a "death assault" into the Saturn environment a year ago, showed that the rain that fell into the planet's equity was at a rate even higher as the craft is caused by the ice particles. Given the data of Cassini and their own research, O. Donoghue estimated that the circles were less than 100 million years.
"Because the circles are losing material, in essence eroding, we can estimate the life of the rings by looking at the amount of things that have been removed," said Dr Connerney. "This was done many years ago (with Ted Northrop) by comparing the depth of optical material in the C circle with that in the B cycle and marrying the loss of this erosion mechanism. We had a similar look at The effect on the inospheric (with Hunter Waite) is also a lot of years ago. These studies all produce an estimated age of ten tens to 100 million years. "