Saturn is a very special planet in our solar system. This is the only planet around which there are seven huge circles which revolve around it. Interestingly, these seven rings made of ice and rocks spin faster than the speed of sound and all have different speeds. Planetary scientist James O Donogh of Japan’s space agency JAXA says that in a way this ring system is like a small solar system where all the objects are orbiting Saturn. Objects near it are moving fast so that Saturn does not clash and those outside are slowly moving.

James designed an animation to show it. It showed that all the rings are rotating in different ways. According to Saturn in the animation, it was shown which ring would be visible from its surface. According to James, Saturn’s ring made of ice has rocks ranging from small particles to icebergs. All revolve around Saturn at their own pace. The speed of its outermost ring is less than the speed of Saturn’s rotation.

According to James, the rings are very long and thin. If they are opened, then all the planets can fit into them. However, their mass is much less than our moon. One moon can create 5000 ring systems of Saturn. Their mass is only three times that of the Earth’s atmosphere. James has also found that all these rings are slowly disappearing. Thousands of kilos of material are showering on Saturn every second. It may be only 300 million years.

Earth-Moon Orbit: The moon is circling a point 3000 miles away from its center, not Earth’s
Apart from this, another animation was prepared by James in which the position of Earth and Moon can be seen for the next three years. However, the distance between the two is not precise but the position is accurate. Through this, he explained that the moon, in fact, travels around the point 3000 miles away from the center of the earth. The earth itself rotates at that point and also rotates itself.

This spot of the center of mass of the Earth-Moon system is called a baricenter. It is a point where an object or system can be balanced and the mass of the system on either side is equal. The Earth-moon baricenter does not fall at the center of the Earth but lies beneath the surface of the Earth.

Today’s History: Richard Walker discovered the epimetheus moon of Saturn in 1966



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