Cassini / Huygens Unmanned Spaceflight

Cassini captures clumping

SaturnThe Cassini spacecraft is close enough to Saturn to observe unusual transitory “clumps” in the planet’s ring system. First spotted by the Voyager space probes in the early 1980s, these clumps zip around Saturn’s outermost rings, following the direction of the planet’s own motion, but until now it hasn’t been possible to get close enough to study those clumps. Unlike the Voyagers, however, Cassini won’t be zipping past the planet at the speed of a bullet – it will enter an orbit around the planet in July and keep an eye on things.