On Earth, storms are a typical incidence, typically taking the type of spirals or round patterns. Can additionally they take a hexagonal form? Nicely, that’s one thing unique to Saturn! The distinctive hexagon-shaped cloud patterns noticed on Saturn’s North Pole stay a singular and intriguing phenomenon inside our photo voltaic system.
NASA Astronomy Image of the Day for June 18 is hexagon clouds over Saturn! The formation of a hexagon on Saturn’s clouds is a captivating thriller. This peculiar phenomenon was initially noticed throughout the Voyager missions within the Nineteen Eighties, and to this present day, it stays distinctive inside our Photo voltaic System – an enduring thriller.
NASA Astronomy Picture of the Day clarification
In late 2012, the Cassini spacecraft captured the sunlit perspective of the northern area of Saturn. Utilizing its wide-angle digicam, Cassini recorded a outstanding false-colour picture of the ringed planet’s north pole. By combining near-infrared picture knowledge, the mixed picture portrays low clouds in shades of pink and excessive clouds in shades of inexperienced, leading to a vibrant and placing depiction of Saturn’s cloud-filled panorama.
“The hexagon is only a present of air, and climate options on the market that share similarities to this are notoriously turbulent and unstable. A hurricane on Earth sometimes lasts every week, however this has been right here for many years — and who is aware of — perhaps centuries,” Andrew Ingersoll, Cassini Imaging Crew stated.
Observations of Saturn’s North Pole reveal a outstanding sight, because the cloud formation retains its distinct hexagonal form even whereas rotating. Not like the occasional cloud formations resembling a hexagon on Earth, Saturn’s cloud sample displays six clearly outlined sides, every of almost equal size. How giant is it? NASA spills the truth that the hexagon on Saturn is so huge that it may accommodate 4 Earths inside its boundaries!
About NASA’s Cassini spacecraft
Cassini, a extremely superior robotic spacecraft, was a collaborative undertaking involving NASA, ESA, and the Italian area company (ASI). Its main mission was to conduct an in-depth exploration of Saturn, together with its system of rings and moons, offering insights into their composition and behavior. The spacecraft was launched on October 15, 1997, and launched into a outstanding journey that spanned over 20 years. Nonetheless, after its in depth mission, The grand finale, for Cassini, was on September 15, 2017.