The Planet Saturn is losing its majestic rings, and in a higher Tempo than we thought. The astronomers close to James O’Donoghue of the US space Agency, Nasa, from an analysis of Saturn’s atmosphere.
The ice particles of the rings to be sucked, therefore, in comparatively large quantity of the gravity of the gas giants. In 100 million years the rings could be gone, explained O’donoghue, in a communication of the University of Leicester. The researchers present their analysis in the US journal “Icarus”.
the two Voyager probes Nasa had found during its flyby in the early 1980s, evidence that the ice particles of Saturn’s rings raining down on the planet down and dark bands in the atmosphere of the gas giant. “We estimate that this “Ring-rain” is beyond the rings of Saturn, a half-hour, the equivalent of an Olympic swimming pool,” said O’donoghue. At this rate, the ring system will be gone no later than 300 million years.
It could, however, go much faster, because another loss: The European-American Saturn probe Cassini, which arrived in 2004, the ringed planet, in addition to had also observed that the Ring-rain is also on the Saturn Equator patters. “Added to that of the space probe “Cassini” proven Ring-Material that falls to the Saturn Equator, life on the Saturn’s rings less than 100 million years,” said O’donoghue. Compared with the age of the planet is more than 4000 million years is a relatively short period of time.
Because they disappear so quickly, researchers assumed that the rings exist in cosmic standards – a very long time. “The low age of the rings has some truly amazing consequences,” added Co-author Tom Stallard of the University of Leicester. “It is possible that Saturn’s rings were at the time of the dinosaurs, even larger and brighter than we see it today. Something dramatic must have at Saturn occurred, long after the Planet itself formed.” The researchers want to observe the phenomenon now, and, among other things, examine how the rings change with the seasons on Saturn.