Wednesday, October 7, 2009
Scientists at NASA have discovered a new ring around Saturn. This ring is thought to be composed of ice crystals and fine dust particles, so it's not immediately visible to the naked eye. It does, however, radiate some heat, and one of NASA's telescopes picked up the heat signature and created this photo of it. As you can see, Saturn is in the middle of the photo, and this ring is friggin HUGE!
They say it would take a billion Earths to fill this ring. How's that for feeling small?? :)
On a related note, I just learned recently about Carl Sagan, and have started watching his 13 part TV special called "The Cosmos." He was incredibly intelligent, and his words just ring true. It's amazing to me that his story has had to be modified very little since that first broadcast in 1980. He truly had a great grasp for what's out there. How inspiring and at the same time humbling.
One thing I learned from him is that every star you see at night, every twinkling light in the sky, is a Sun not that much unlike ours. It may dwarf our Sun in size, or be hundreds of times bigger, but it's a sun in its own group of planets. There's billions of them. Wow.