To keep Saturn’s A ring contained, its moons stand united

ITHACA, N.Y. – For three decades, astronomers thought that only Saturn’s moon Janus confined the planet’s A ring – the largest and farthest of the visible rings. But after poring over NASA’s Cassini mission data, Cornell astronomers now conclude that the teamwork of seven moons keeps this ring corralled. Without forces to hold the A […]

Cassini’s mission revolutionized understanding of outer solar system

NASA’s Cassini spacecraft only has a few days left before its final approach to the giant planet Saturn. On Sept. 15, Cassini will dive into Saturn’s atmosphere, sending science data for as long as it can, and then melt and break apart. Alexander Hayes is an assistant professor of astronomy at Cornell University. Hayes is […]

In a cosmic hit-and-run, icy Saturn moon may have flipped

Media Note: Images can be viewed and downloaded at https://cornell.box.com/v/Enceladus. ITHACA, N.Y. – Enceladus – a large icy, oceanic moon of Saturn –  may have flipped, the possible victim of an out-of-this-world wallop. While combing through data collected by NASA’s Cassini mission during flybys of Enceladus, astronomers from Cornell University, the University of Texas and […]

It’s too early to mourn Cassini, the quintessential discovery machine

On April 26, Cassini will start a series of dives through the 1,500-mile-wide gap between Saturn and its rings as part of the mission’s grand finale. Jonathan Lunine, is the director of the Cornell Center for Astrophysics and Planetary Science and has worked on a variety of aspects of the Cassini mission, including the radar […]

Saturn’s bulging core implies moons younger than thought

ITHACA, N.Y. – Freshly harvested data from NASA’s Cassini mission reveals that the ringed planet’s moons may be younger than previously thought. “All of these Cassini mission measurements are changing our view of the Saturnian system, as it turns our old theories upside down,” said Radwan Tajeddine, Cornell University research associate in astronomy and a […]

Saturn’s bulging core implies moons younger than thought

Freshly harvested data from NASA’s Cassini mission reveals that Saturn’s bulging core and twisting gravitational forces are leading some astronomers to believe that the ringed planet’s moons are younger than previously thought. “All of these Cassini mission measurements are changing our view of the Saturnian system, as it turns our old theories upside down,” said […]

Astrophysicists and Cassini team members available to speak on flyby of Saturn moon

Two Cassini team members and astrophysicists at Cornell University are available for interviews following the historic flight of the Cassini spacecraft by Enceladus – one of Saturn’s moons – on Wednesday in an effort to detect clues of life on the planet. The spacecraft will try to sample vapor and frozen particle from Enceladus’ icy […]