APOD: Neon Saturn (2016 Mar 13)

Comments and questions about the APOD on the main view screen.
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APOD Robot
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APOD: Neon Saturn (2016 Mar 13)

Post by APOD Robot » Sun Mar 13, 2016 5:07 am

Image Neon Saturn

Explanation: If seen in the right light, Saturn glows like a neon sign. Although Saturn has comparatively little of the element neon, a composite image false-colored in three bands of infrared light highlights features of the giant ringed planet like a glowing sign. At the most blue band of the infrared light featured, false-colored blue in the above image, Saturn itself appears dark but Saturn's thin rings brightly reflect light from our Sun. Conversely, Saturn's B ring is so thick that little reflected light makes it through, creating a dark band between Saturn's A and C rings. At the most red band of the infrared, false-colored red above, Saturn emits a surprisingly detailed thermal glow, indicating planet-wide bands, huge hurricane-like storms, and a strange hexagon-shaped cloud system around the North Pole. In the middle infrared band, false-colored green, the sunlit side of Saturn's atmosphere reflects brightly. The above image was obtained in 2007 by the robotic Cassini spacecraft orbiting about 1.6 million kilometers out from Saturn.

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heehaw

Re: APOD: Neon Saturn (2016 Mar 13)

Post by heehaw » Sun Mar 13, 2016 10:44 am

Hey, who plugged in Saturn?

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Ann
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Re: APOD: Neon Saturn (2016 Mar 13)

Post by Ann » Sun Mar 13, 2016 11:25 am

Saturn imaged through green, violet and ultraviolet filters.
Photo: Voyager 2, NASA.
I remember another "neon Saturn" image, namely this one, taken by Voyager 2. I thought it was crazily colored for no reason, but it was probably a better image than I thought. The fact that it was taken through green, violet and ultraviolet filters should have told scientists some interesting facts about the cloud cover of Saturn.

Today's APOD is interesting. It is quite fantastic to see the difference between the far infrared image of Saturn, which shows amazing detail in the cloud cover, and the sunlit green part of Saturn, which is uninterestingly bland.

Saturn sure is hazy. Saturnian weather forecast: Hazy. Cold. Stormy.

Ann
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Re: APOD: Neon Saturn (2016 Mar 13)

Post by Boomer12k » Sun Mar 13, 2016 10:35 pm

Always an interesting place...

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Re: APOD: Neon Saturn (2016 Mar 13)

Post by Nitpicker » Mon Mar 14, 2016 1:07 am

The "above image" link gives a more detailed description and analysis of this image, and includes the following paragraph:
A pronounced difference in the brightness [in the 5.1 micron wavelength red channel] between the northern and southern hemispheres is apparent. The northern hemisphere is about twice as bright as the southern hemisphere. This is because high-level, fine particles are about half as prevalent in the northern hemisphere as in the south. These particles block Saturn's glow more strongly, making Saturn look brighter in the north.
Is it known whether this brightness (and high-level, fine particle) difference is maintained throughout the 30 year seasonal cycle?

I kinda wanna see this image with just the red channel.

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Re: APOD: Neon Saturn (2016 Mar 13)

Post by saturno2 » Mon Mar 14, 2016 1:51 am

Interesting image of the Neon Saturn
My favourite planet

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Re: APOD: Neon Saturn (2016 Mar 13)

Post by neufer » Mon Mar 14, 2016 3:02 am

Nitpicker wrote:The "above image" link gives a more detailed description and analysis of this image, and includes the following paragraph:
A pronounced difference in the brightness [in the 5.1 micron wavelength red channel] between the northern and southern hemispheres is apparent. The northern hemisphere is about twice as bright as the southern hemisphere. This is because high-level, fine particles are about half as prevalent in the northern hemisphere as in the south. These particles block Saturn's glow more strongly, making Saturn look brighter in the north.
Is it known whether this brightness (and high-level, fine particle) difference is maintained throughout the 30 year seasonal cycle?
The "high-level, fine particles" are probably a consequence of direct sunlight heating.
Art Neuendorffer