Mystery of Saturn's Rings May Finally Get Answer From Cassini Probe
By Andrea Thompson
SPACE.com Senior Writer
posted: 06 April 2010
07:51 am ET
The rings of Saturn have been known of since telescopes began peering at the heavens. Galileo first spotted them in 1610. Since that time, astronomers have learned more and more about Saturn's most striking feature, from the material that makes up the rings to the forces that jostle that material around.
But two of the most basic-sounding pieces of information about Saturn's rings — their mass and age — remain something of a mystery.
These questions are "the big elephant in the room," said Jeff Cuzzi, interdisciplinary scientist for rings and dust for NASA's Cassini spacecraft. Cuzzi is based at NASA Ames Research Center in Moffett Field, Calif.
Astronomers hope that this mystery will be solved, or at least better understoo
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