Saturn

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by FaithyBrewha
Last updated 5 years ago

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Planets
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Saturn

SATURN

Saturn is 746 miles (400 light years)from earth. it was first discovered in 1610 by Galileo Galilei. Is about 568.3 kg (95.16 earth mass)

There are two theories as to how Saturn was formed, the core creation theory, and the disk instability method.

The core accretion modelApproximately 4.6 billion years ago, the solar system was a cloud of dust and gas known as a solar nebula. Gravity collapsed the material in on itself as it began to spin, forming the sun in the center of the nebula.With the rise of the sun, the remaining material began to clump together. Small particles drew together, bound by the force of gravity, into larger particles. The solar wind swept away lighter elements, such as hydrogen and helium, from the closer regions, leaving only heavy, rocky materials to create terrestrial worlds. But farther away, the solar winds had less impact on lighter elements, allowing them to coalesce into gas giants such as Saturn. In this way, asteroids, comets, planets, and moons were created.The composition of Saturn is almost completely the light gas hydrogen, with a significant part of it also composed of helium. Small traces of other elements exist in Saturn's atmosphere, as well. In order to capture these gases, Saturn needed to form its massive core quickly. The massive core could then gravitationally capture the lighter elements before solar winds swept them away.The disk instability modelBut the need for a rapid formation for the giant gas planets is one of the problems of core accretion. According to models, the process takes several million years, longer than the light gases were available in the early solar system. At the same time, the core accretion model faces a migration issue, as the baby planets are likely to spiral into the sun in a short amount of time.According to a relatively new theory, disk instability, clumps of dust and gas are bound together early in the life of the solar system. Over time, these clumps slowly compact into a giant planet. These planets can form faster than their core accretion rivals, sometimes in as little as a thousand years, allowing them to trap the rapidly-vanishing lighter gases. They also quickly reach an orbit-stabilizing mass that keeps them from death-marching into the sun.As scientists continue to study planets inside of the solar system, as well as around other stars, they will better understand how Saturn and its siblings formed. -Space.com

-Saturn was one of the five planets visible to the naked eye that have been known to exist for thousands of years. The Ancient Greeks knew about the planet and named it after their god of agriculture – Kronos. That may be due to the planet’s golden color, which is similar to wheat. The planet later became known as Saturnus or Saturn, which was the Roman equivalent of Kronos.

Although people have known about Saturn for thousands of years, discoveries have still been made about the planet more recently. No one knew that Saturn had rings until the 1600’s. Galileo discovered them with his telescope in 1610, but he did not know what these were either. Thus they remained a mystery until 1655 when the astronomer Christian Huygen figured out that they were planetary rings.

The orbit of Saturn lasts 29.7 years. In other words, during the time Saturn completes one full revolution around the Sun, Earth has gone through almost 30 years. Like all the planets in the Solar System, the orbit of Saturn isn’t a perfect circle. It follows an elliptical path around the Sun.

-Saturn is made up of mostly hydrogen, which it captured in the early stages of its formation. Most of the remaining composition is helium. Other elements, such as methane and ammonia, are found in small doses. Nitrogen and oxygen also mix within the atmosphere.

-Geology is the study of land and landforms, which are based on solid ground, like rocks, soil, and sand. Since Saturn does not have these things, Saturn does not have geological traits.

-Since Galileo's time, a great deal more has been learned about this mysterious planet, including its gaseous exterior, its dense core and its brilliant display of outer rings.

-The rings of Saturn are the most extensive planetary ring system of any planet in the Solar System. They consist of countless small particles, ranging in size from micrometres to metres, that orbit about Saturn. The ring particles are made almost entirely of water ice, with a trace component of rocky material.

-Saturn has 62 moons with confirmed orbits, 53 of which have names and only 13 of which have diameters larger than 50 kilometers.

-The exploration of Saturn has been solely performed by unmanned probes. Three missions were flybys, which formed an extended foundation of knowledge about the system. The Cassini–Huygens spacecraft was launched in 1997 and Cassini is currently in orbit (as of 2015).


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