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Topic: University of Idaho

NASA’s Voyager 2 Spacecraft data suggests Uranus may have Two Additional Moons

 

Written by Elizabeth Landau
NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationPasadena, CA – NASA’s Voyager 2 spacecraft flew by Uranus 30 years ago, but researchers are still making discoveries from the data it gathered then. A new study led by University of Idaho researchers suggests there could be two tiny, previously undiscovered moonlets orbiting near two of the planet’s rings.

Rob Chancia, a University of Idaho doctoral student, spotted key patterns in the rings while examining decades-old images of Uranus’ icy rings taken by Voyager 2 in 1986. He noticed the amount of ring material on the edge of the alpha ring — one of the brightest of Uranus’ multiple rings — varied periodically. A similar, even more promising pattern occurred in the same part of the neighboring beta ring.

Uranus is seen in this false-color view from NASA's Hubble Space Telescope from August 2003. The brightness of the planet's faint rings and dark moons has been enhanced for visibility. (NASA/Erich Karkoschka (Univ. Arizona))

Uranus is seen in this false-color view from NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope from August 2003. The brightness of the planet’s faint rings and dark moons has been enhanced for visibility. (NASA/Erich Karkoschka (Univ. Arizona))

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NASA’s Cassini Spacecraft data used to weigh Saturn’s biggest ring

 

Written by Preston Dyches
NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationPasadena, CA – It seems intuitive that an opaque material should contain more stuff than a more translucent substance. For example, muddier water has more suspended particles of dirt in it than clearer water. Likewise, you might think that, in the rings of Saturn, more opaque areas contain a greater concentration of material than places where the rings seem more transparent.

But this intuition does not always apply, according to a recent study of the rings using data from NASA’s Cassini mission. In their analysis, scientists found surprisingly little correlation between how dense a ring might appear to be — in terms of its opacity and reflectiveness — and the amount of material it contains.

The B ring is the brightest of Saturn's rings when viewed in reflected sunlight. (NASA/JPL-Caltech/Space Science Institute)

The B ring is the brightest of Saturn’s rings when viewed in reflected sunlight. (NASA/JPL-Caltech/Space Science Institute)

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NASA’s Cassini spacecraft gets images of Lakes on Saturn’s moon Titan

 

Written by Jia-Rui Cook
NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationPasadena, CA – With the sun now shining down over the north pole of Saturn’s moon Titan, a little luck with the weather, and trajectories that put the spacecraft into optimal viewing positions, NASA’s Cassini spacecraft has obtained new pictures of the liquid methane and ethane seas and lakes that reside near Titan’s north pole.

The images reveal new clues about how the lakes formed and about Titan’s Earth-like “hydrologic” cycle, which involves hydrocarbons rather than water.

This false-color mosaic, made from infrared data collected by NASA's Cassini spacecraft, reveals the differences in the composition of surface materials around hydrocarbon lakes at Titan, Saturn's largest moon. (NASA/JPL-Caltech/University of Arizona/University of Idaho)

This false-color mosaic, made from infrared data collected by NASA’s Cassini spacecraft, reveals the differences in the composition of surface materials around hydrocarbon lakes at Titan, Saturn’s largest moon. (NASA/JPL-Caltech/University of Arizona/University of Idaho)

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NASA’s Cassini spacecraft captures image of the Dark Side of Saturn’s Rings

 

Written by Jia-Rui Cook
NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationPasadena, CA – The gauzy rings of Saturn and the dark side of the planet glow in newly released infrared images obtained by NASA’s Cassini spacecraft.

“Looking at the Saturn system when it is backlit by the sun gives scientists a kind of inside-out view of Saturn that we don’t normally see,” said Matt Hedman, a participating scientist based at the University of Idaho, Moscow, Idaho. “The parts of Saturn’s rings that are bright when you look at them from backyard telescopes on Earth are dark, and other parts that are typically dark glow brightly in this view.”

This colorized mosaic from NASA's Cassini mission shows an infrared view of the Saturn system, backlit by the sun, from July 19th, 2013. (NASA/JPL-Caltech/University of Arizona/Cornell)

This colorized mosaic from NASA’s Cassini mission shows an infrared view of the Saturn system, backlit by the sun, from July 19th, 2013. (NASA/JPL-Caltech/University of Arizona/Cornell)

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Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency receives Teaming with Wildlife Award for partnerships for Hellbenders Research

 

Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency - TWRANashville, TN – The Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency has been honored with the Teaming with Wildlife Award for Partnerships for its collaborative research on hellbenders in Tennessee.

Bill Reeves, TWRA Chief of Biodiversity, received the award in a ceremony in Washington, D.C. at the Rayburn House Office Building. The award is the culmination of extensive work on the current status of the species of giant salamanders that is endemic to eastern North America.

Bill Reeves, (far left) received the Teaming With Wildlife Award for Partnerships in a ceremony in Washington, D.C. Also pictured are Dr. Stephen Spear (Orianne Society), Dr. Brian Miller (MTSU), Dr. Michael Freake (Lee University), Dale McGinnity (Nashville Zoo), and Naomi Edelson (National Wildlife Federation Director of State and Federal Partnerships).

Bill Reeves, (far left) received the Teaming With Wildlife Award for Partnerships in a ceremony in Washington, D.C. Also pictured are Dr. Stephen Spear (Orianne Society), Dr. Brian Miller (MTSU), Dr. Michael Freake (Lee University), Dale McGinnity (Nashville Zoo), and Naomi Edelson (National Wildlife Federation Director of State and Federal Partnerships).

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Tennessee Titans sign quarterback Nathan Enderle to Futures Contract

 

Tennessee TitansNashville, TN – The Tennessee Titans have signed quarterback Nathan Enderle to a futures contract.

Enderle (6-foot-4, 240 pounds) was a fifth-round selection in the 2011 NFL Draft by the Chicago Bears. He spent the entire 2011 season on the Bears active roster, but did not appear in a game.

Enderle was waived by the Chicago last June, signed by the Jacksonville Jaguars and waived after training camp. He was a four-year starter at the University of Idaho who threw for 10,084 yards and 81 touchdowns in 45 games.

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