View Full Version : Discussion: Deeper Analysis Of Phoebe Flyby

2004-Jun-23, 06:03 PM
SUMMARY: Scientists working with NASA's Cassini spacecraft have stitched together photos taken by the spacecraft to build a complete picture of Phoebe, a moon of Saturn that the spacecraft passed on June 11. The tiny moon is likely an ancient collection of ice, rock and carbon-containing compounds similar to Pluto and Neptune's moon Triton. Planetesimals like this could be very common in the outer reaches of the Solar System, as they were ejected during the early formation of the planets. Phoebe was probably captured early on by Saturn, perhaps 4 billion years ago.

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2004-Jun-24, 01:09 AM
What in the world is so darn special about this one small moon? Is it as significant as the others?

2004-Jun-24, 03:29 AM
Humph, well-opposed to all the rest of the outer-worldly objects...if out of a million it was a fraction being noted-then a problem solved is worth a riddle being infracted. <_<

2004-Jun-24, 03:32 AM
Again and always...thank you. :ph34r: Victoria

2004-Jun-24, 03:49 AM
When the solar system first formed, scientists think that the gravity of the big planets pushed out many of the icy objects to the Kuiper Belt region (past Neptune). These are extremely far out, and would be almost impossible to study. It looks like Phoebe is a remnant of these objects that got caught by Saturn before it could escape the inner Solar System with the rest of the KBE. Cassini will have a chance to study it several times over the next few years and get a sense of the materials that helped to form the original Solar System.

It&#39;s like being able to pick up a fossil and study it up close, instead of having to peer at them with a pair of binoculars on the side a hill a mile away, and that&#39;s why it&#39;s important.