Day 1 2 Background 2.1 Cosmology 2.1.12 Student Overview Day 2

Saturn

Mercury ] Venus ] Mars ] Jupiter ] Saturn ] Uranus ] Neptune ] Pluto ]


Saturn, the sixth planet from the Sun, is the second largest planet in the solar system. It is often called the ringed planet because many rings of dust and rocks surround it. Saturn also has 22 moons.


Basic Facts

 

Saturn

Earth

Position from the Sun

6

3

Diameter

74,898 miles (120,526 km)

7,926 miles (12,753 km)

Moons

22

1

Rings

Many

0

Average Distance from Sun

888,000,000 miles (1,429,000,000 km)

93,000,000 miles (149,000,000 km)

Your Weight on the Planet

Multiply your weight by 1.02

Multiply your weight by 1.0

Length of One Year

29 Earth years

1 Earth year

Length of One Day

10 hours and 14 minutes

24 hours

Whats in the Atmosphere?

Hydrogen, helium

Nitrogen, oxygen

Temperature

-290F (-180C)

-128F to 136F

(-89C to 58C)


Discovery

Saturn is clearly visible in the night sky. The ancient Greeks named the planet after the god of agriculture and time. It wasn't until 1655, however, that we knew Saturn had rings. Galileo saw them, but he didn't know what they were. Another astronomer, Christian Huygens, later discovered they were rings.


Missions to Saturn

Mission

Launch Date

Mission Accomplishments

Pioneer 11 (USA)

April 6, 1973

Took pictures of Saturn. Discovered new rings and moons.

Voyager 1 (USA)

September 5, 1977

Took pictures of Saturn's moons. Discovered how complex Saturns rings were.

Voyager 2 (USA)

August 20, 1977

Took pictures of Saturn's moons.

Cassini (USA, European Space Agency, Italy)

October 13, 1997

Experiments will help scientists understand Saturn's moons, rings, and atmosphere. Will send a probe into Titan's atmosphere.


Interesting Facts About Saturn


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