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Cassini-Huygens Reaches Phoebe

michael posted more than 10 years ago | from the bulls-eye dept.

Space 178

Anonymous Explorer writes "The Cassini-Huygens probe is set to fly by the largest outer Saturn moon of Phoebe today. Cassini will be roughly 2000 km from the surface of Phoebe at 1:56 Pacific time Friday, June 11. Thats pretty darn close. The newest images of Phoebe are already thousands of times better than the previous ones taken by the Voyager 2 mission in 1981. Phoebe is interesting in that it maintains a retrograde orbit around Saturn. This has lead to the hypothesis that it is an ancient asteroid that has been captured by the gravitational pull from Saturn. Phoebe may provide some important insights into the composition of early building blocks of our planets. Phoebe was discovered in 1898 by American astronomer William Pickering. As always, discussion about this mission can be found at #cassini on irc.freenode.net."

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All this and more... (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9399593)

... on a very special "Friends".

Re:All this and more... (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9399626)

"reaches Phoebe", you see. Its a joke. Oh, fuck it.

Re:All this and more... (2, Funny)

bludstone (103539) | more than 10 years ago | (#9399816)

You know, I was going to post "the first person to make a reference to 'friends' gets smacked with a wet noodle."

But I was too late.

-sigh-

I hate that show, and am convinced that it only suceeded because it ran after the simpsons.

Re:All this and more... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9400369)

erm...The Simpsons has aired on Sunday since the 94-95 season, which was when Friends first aired, on Thursday. Friends did, however, follow Seinfeld, which probably helped its popularity.

Link? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9399600)

Sheesh... What's the deal with people giving all these links? If you're going to do that, put something in there to distinguish it from the other nonesense links or something...

No Different (-1, Troll)

DarkSlash (787403) | more than 10 years ago | (#9399605)

Phoebe's mission is no different than many other probes that were promised to give valuable insight into the building of the univerese. Many other probes have promised the same thing but we have not yet seem the information. Although, I must admit it the information it will collect will probably be extremley interesting, however it will not give valuable insight.

Re:No Different (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9399656)

Phoebe's mission is no different than many other probes

If Cassini confirms your theory that Phoebe is a probe, I think that will be a very valuable insight. It will mean there are aliens that were building probes long before us, and they could build probes that are hundreds of miles wide.

Re:No Different (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9399684)

i love you

Re:No Different (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9399695)

"If Cassini confirms your theory that Phoebe is a probe, I think that will be a very valuable insight. It will mean there are aliens that were building probes long before us, and they could build probes that are hundreds of miles wide."

Like Uranus? -- Sorry.. had to.

Re:No Different (1)

dr_davel (594449) | more than 10 years ago | (#9400033)

I'm just thinking, if Phoebe is the probe, I am very concerned about learning what aperture it was designed for.

Re:No Different (4, Insightful)

FluffyG (692458) | more than 10 years ago | (#9399683)

Many people have that same idea about NASA and its exploration, that it will not give any valuable insight or information regarding the universe. I would like to think out of all of the mysteries of earth, space is the biggest one. Hopefully one day there will be valuable insight and information that will support a need for NASA besides pictures and samples of surfaces that wont even make it back to earth for a more indepth examination. These probes may gather the specific information the scientists are looking for but maybe something new can be found from looking and studying it in person, and perhaps some new tests could be created that could give us the valuable insight we seek.

Of all the mysteries of earth... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9400026)

The ocean is the biggest one.

Space is the biggest mystery of the galaxy/universe ;)

Re:Of all the mysteries of earth... (1)

FluffyG (692458) | more than 10 years ago | (#9400140)

no... of earth, i would have to say women are the greatest mystery.

Re:No Different (5, Interesting)

monkeySauce (562927) | more than 10 years ago | (#9399691)

How can you possibly determine what is or isn't valuable information before it's even discovered??

Granted there are never any guarantees, but the Cassini probe is going to be over 1000 times closer than previous probes. You never know what it might discover.

On the contrary (4, Insightful)

lockefire (691775) | more than 10 years ago | (#9399719)

On the contrary, the phoebe probe will give us extremely valuable insight into the creation of our Solar System. In fact, it already has in that it is cratered (albeit, not seen as a major discovery to most people). Scientists have wondered for years how it managed to only reflect 6% of the light hitting it. In addition, since this may be a Kuiper object, it would be the only (relatively) stationary one within reasonable range from Earth to study.

Re:No Different (1)

PCM2 (4486) | more than 10 years ago | (#9399857)

Phoebe's mission is no different than many other probes that were promised to give valuable insight into the building of the univerese. Many other probes have promised the same thing but we have not yet seem the information. Although, I must admit it the information it will collect will probably be extremley interesting, however it will not give valuable insight.
Uh... yeah. What he said.

BTW, you don't work for the Alexis de Toqueville Institute, by any chance, do you?

Re:No Different (1)

redphive (175243) | more than 10 years ago | (#9399880)

Don't you mean The Cassini-Huygens mission? Phoebe is the little moon like thing that is cause for all this hubbub.

Re:No Different (4, Insightful)

Teancum (67324) | more than 10 years ago | (#9399966)

While I would have to agree that it seems as though if you've seen one moon, you've seen them all, it still adds value for the Cassini probe (not Phoebe, but I understand what you are hinting at) to explore Phoebe.

And yes, it is very possible that something unexpected will be seen. That would indeed give valuable insite. Even if it is just an ordinary hunk of rock, it will still give insight into the composition of other Saturnian moons and what to expect in that region of the solar system. Even as just a simple data point. It is expected that even more will be found, and frankly I look forward to visually exploring this world in a way that nobody until today has been able to see it like.

When the Voyager probes went by Io, there was no hint that it could possibly be showing active volcanoes, or be hinting at the distinct possibilities of seeing liquid oceans on Europa (admittedly buired under ice, but still there). I don't expect such a revelation with Phoebe, but you don't know. Perhaps a black monolith with proportions 1 x 4 x 9?

Re:No Different (1)

kfg (145172) | more than 10 years ago | (#9400199)

And yes, it is very possible that something unexpected will be seen. That would indeed give valuable insite.

Up to a point even seeing what you expect is valuable information.

It was the regularity of the behavior of falling bodies that provided the insight that makes this very mission possible.

KFG

Here's the lowdown (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9399608)

for an idea of what to expext, here are some preliminary images of Phoebe. [twinklestar.nl]

For those of us who aren't astrophysicists. (5, Insightful)

Short Circuit (52384) | more than 10 years ago | (#9399625)

Google search, "define: retrograde [google.com] "

Re:For those of us who aren't astrophysicists. (1, Funny)

tomasito (734587) | more than 10 years ago | (#9399697)

I am not an astrophysicist. I did a GIS for "Phoebe" and was even more confused... Is the Cassini-Huygens craft going to "probe" Lisa Kudrow?

Re:For those of us who aren't astrophysicists. (5, Funny)

hopemafia (155867) | more than 10 years ago | (#9399813)

As a Geologist I'm even more confused by your statement 'I did a GIS for "Phoebe"'.
I use GIS quite a lot and didn't know that geographical information systems had anything to do with space exploration or Lisa Kudrow. To think all this time all I've been doing with my GIS is mapping and spatial analysis.
I'll have to fire up ArcView and try out these new features you describe...

Re:For those of us who aren't astrophysicists. (1)

CodeMonkey4Hire (773870) | more than 10 years ago | (#9399956)

Maybe he meant a Google Image Search [google.com] ? No wonder he's confused; what's up with the llama [netcom.com] ?

Re:For those of us who aren't astrophysicists. (1)

kunudo (773239) | more than 10 years ago | (#9399842)

You mean for those of us that don't speak english, right? Think retroactive or something. There's ålenty of words using retro. Figure it out from the context. It's not that hard.

plenty (0, Offtopic)

kunudo (773239) | more than 10 years ago | (#9399916)

Apparently, I can't spell.

A little more on Retrograde (5, Informative)

Pi_0's don't shower (741216) | more than 10 years ago | (#9399846)

For those of you who want a bit of information, check out this link on retrograde motion [encyclozine.com] , which does an excellent job of explaining what retrograde is. For those who are curious but too lazy to click, some of the interesting info is given below:
# Venus rotates slowly in the retrograde direction.
# The moons Ananke, Carme, Pasiphaë and Sinope all orbit Jupiter in a retrograde direction, and are thought to be fragments of a single body that Jupiter captured long ago. Many other minor moons of Jupiter orbit retrograde.
# The moon Phoebe orbits Saturn in a retrograde direction, and is thought to be a captured asteroid.
# The moon Triton orbits Neptune in a retrograde direction, and is thought to be a captured Kuiper belt object.
# The planet Uranus has an axial tilt which is very near to 90, and can be considered to be rotating in a retrograde direction depending on one's interpretation.

Re:For those of us who aren't astrophysicists. (1)

ari_j (90255) | more than 10 years ago | (#9400100)

I like how it is specified in the article lead to "maintain" a retrograde orbit. As in it hasn't changed ... yet.

Oh no, not Phoebe! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9399632)

The series has been cancelled, she's getting married and now she has to deal with probes! Hopefully Joey can help her out!

Friends (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9399635)

I thought friends finale was a few weeks ago?

Hi-res images (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9399675)

Mirrored just in time [tinyurl.com]

Parking (4, Funny)

tedgyz (515156) | more than 10 years ago | (#9399677)

Hmmm, that deep crater looks like a good place to park the Millenium Falcon while we wait for that Star Destroyer to leave.

Re:Parking (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9399713)

This is no CAVE!

Re:Parking (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9399856)

No, it's the goatse guy. :(

Re:Parking (2, Funny)

Paulrothrock (685079) | more than 10 years ago | (#9400055)

It's a TRAP!

Come on, it's funny on Fark.

Re:Parking (2, Funny)

Noren (605012) | more than 10 years ago | (#9399913)

"It's heading for that small moon."

"That's no moon... it's a captured carbonaceous asteroid."

Check it out... (1)

Big Troller (651808) | more than 10 years ago | (#9399688)

Here is some pictures of the probe [google.com]
Pretty interesting to look at...!
Wonder how long it takes for this one to get to saturn.?

Re:Check it out... (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9399761)

I wonder how long it will take you to produce a troll page which actually works, you 404 llama.

Wow (4, Interesting)

Mick Ohrberg (744441) | more than 10 years ago | (#9399690)

This is just amazing. We're really reaching further and further out in the solar system. And not just by blindly sending probes out there, but by consciously seeking to get close to other bodies in the solar system, and really finding out. I really hope I get to see the Europa landings in my lifetime.

you set yourself up (4, Funny)

proj_2501 (78149) | more than 10 years ago | (#9399737)

don't you humans get the message? what part of "ATTEMPT NO LANDINGS THERE" is hard to understand?

Re:you set yourself up (5, Funny)

lpontiac (173839) | more than 10 years ago | (#9400002)

It's about as hard to understand as "CONGRESS SHALL MAKE NO LAW" :)

You're a typical Slashbot dumbass. (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9399827)

Nothing is going to be found on any of these "bodies" that we don't already expect (ie rocks, dust, and craters).

You should be concerned with spending this money on stuff that is important. Healthcare, the poor, roads, underwater research, cancer, STDs, Iraq, Afghanistan, longevity, drugs (prescription or otherwise), etc.

Mod me down Slashbotters but remember that there are plenty of more important things than sending probes to see dust particles and rocks.

Re:You're a typical Slashbot dumbass. (-1, Offtopic)

gatkinso (15975) | more than 10 years ago | (#9399938)

Healthcare: takes care of itself (victims die or heal)
the poor: can damn well get jobs
roads: ok that is a good point
under water research: ever see Sphere?????
STD's: keep it in your pants
Iraq, Afganistan: puh-leeeze
longevity: live clean + excersize and live long
drugs: there is always Canada

Re:You're a typical Slashbot dumbass. (2, Interesting)

PCM2 (4486) | more than 10 years ago | (#9399947)

And there's plenty of other important causes you could be contributing to besides filling your belly with Budweiser and buying batteries for your remote control. You could be solving the problems of world hunger right now, but instead you spend all day working in an office, you callous bastard. I'm disgusted at your inhumanity. Next you'll be telling me that there's more than one worthwhile endeavor on earth, or that the quest for knowledge is one of the fundamental characteristics that distinguishes mankind from the beasts of the forest, or some crap like that.

Re:You're a typical Slashbot dumbass. (3, Insightful)

aelbric (145391) | more than 10 years ago | (#9400130)

Your entire list of "issues" is made up of items that are entirely social in nature. Humankind could solve every single one of these if we could just put aside our petty differences and decide to do it. "Physician, heal thyself"

Space research is truly the last frontier. The knowledge derived from it lifts all humanity even if only from the perspective of giving us a glimpse into what all of us alive today will never see. Once a spacecraft leaves our planet it become research in it's purest form.

Fixing the roads may be important to you today but 1000 years from now will mankind get use from the fact that the local interstate had no potholes in 2004 or that a wealth of scientific information was gathered from Cassini?

Use Celestia to preview the image quality (4, Informative)

Rei (128717) | more than 10 years ago | (#9400012)

I'm really excited about the new photos... I hope they release full res mosaics and don't delay... pre-processed surface texture and heightmap data would be nice, too.

If you want to get an idea of just how high res pictures they're going to get, do the following:

1) Download the program "Celestia". Build and run it.
2) While it is building, pull up the last picture that Cassini took of Phoebe.
3) When Celestia comes up, full screen it.
4) Go into the configuration and tell it to include full details. Exit the configuration menu.
5) Press enter, and type in "Phoebe". Press enter.
6) Press 'g' to go to Phoebe (note: Phoebe is currently false-texture in Celestia, since we don't know much about it)
7) Middle click and hold down, and drag the mouse until you're at a distance of 658,000 kilometers.
8) Press ctrl-'+' to zoom, until the resolution of Phoebe that you're seing on the screen is about the same as that in the NASA picture (note: resolution, not size. The nasa picture is enlarged).
9) Without changing the zoom, hold middle click againa nd drag the mouse until the distance is 2,000 kilometers.
10) Hold down shift, and use the arrow keys to look around. That's the sort of resolution images that they should be able to get.

Impressive, isn't it? I can't wait! :)

Re:Use Celestia to preview the image quality (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9400208)

Then press L R L R U D U D and you will be granted unlimited ammunition and the ability to use all warp-tunnels within the galaxy.

More about Phoebe (5, Informative)

JaF893 (745419) | more than 10 years ago | (#9399734)

Here are some links about phoebe and the Cassini-Huygens:
Phoebe [wikipedia.org]
Cassini-Huygens [wikipedia.org]

Re:More about Phoebe (1)

maxbang (598632) | more than 10 years ago | (#9400068)

Another good link [frii.com] about Phoebe. It should be noted that the satellite is transmitting blurry images of the moon sitting on a couch and drinking coffee while uttering words of wisdom which, at first glance, seem stupid. It also seems eerily older than the rest of the moons.

insite? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9399735)

Phoebe may provide some important insites into the composition
This should hopefully speak for itself...

Re:insite? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9399948)

I've gained new insite into the spelling and grammar of slashdot mods..

Looking at newest images of Phoebe... (0, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9399736)

Obi-Wan: That's no moon. It's a space station.

Re:Looking at newest images of Phoebe... (2, Interesting)

Crazieeman (610662) | more than 10 years ago | (#9399808)

Actually, Mimas [solarviews.com] is just that.

Two objects on the picture (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9399755)

So Phoebe has a moon?

Re:Two objects on the picture (4, Informative)

youknowmewell (754551) | more than 10 years ago | (#9399807)

That is actually Phoebe on both sides. The right one is a picture of Phoebe 13 hours after the left one. it takes Phoebe only 9 and a half hours to make a full spin on it's axis (It has 9 and a half hour days). Those are two different hemispheres.

Cassini-Huygens Reaches Phoebe (0, Offtopic)

Timesprout (579035) | more than 10 years ago | (#9399762)

Then decides she is too much of a dizzy blonde and that Rachel might be more interesting.

Gradient Shading.. (2, Funny)

sirdude (578412) | more than 10 years ago | (#9399804)

That moon looks like one of my recent attempts at Photoshop :S

mmm gradient shading :)

When it's actually arriving (4, Insightful)

david.given (6740) | more than 10 years ago | (#9399811)

Look, guys, saying that it arrives at '1:56 PST' is bloody useless. Apart from the fact that Pacific Time is largely meaningless to most of the world, you don't even say whether that's morning or afternoon!

Having scoured the web sites --- it's actually quite hard to find the information --- the probe is doing the close flyby at 2056 UTC (i.e. about two and a half hours from now). Assuming I've got the daylight saving compensation right, of course...

Re:When it's actually arriving (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9399841)

I live in the Pacific time zone, you Insensitive Clod!

Re:When it's actually arriving (1)

Mr. Sketch (111112) | more than 10 years ago | (#9399868)

Then you've never found timeanddate.com [timeanddate.com]

Re:When it's actually arriving (0, Flamebait)

david.given (6740) | more than 10 years ago | (#9399946)

Then you've never found timeanddate.com

No, I hadn't... but it still doesn't help. The website won't let me pick a timezone, it wants me to pick a city --- and I don't know where the hell PST is!

I did make a wild stab and fed in Los Angeles, being the only west-coast city I know in the US, and it came out the same, so I am reassured.

Seriously, guys, if you're talking to a world audience it's so much more convenient if you use UTC. Everyone knows how to convert UTC to and from their local time; it's considerably harder to convert to and from some bizarre local time half way round the planet.

Re:When it's actually arriving (1)

Surt (22457) | more than 10 years ago | (#9400132)

I knew how to convert PST to EST. I wouldn't be sure how to convert UTC to EST.

Re:When it's actually arriving (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9400178)

-5 for most of the year.

Re:When it's actually arriving (1)

DrEldarion (114072) | more than 10 years ago | (#9400207)

Seriously, guys, if you're talking to a world audience it's so much more convenient if you use UTC. Everyone knows how to convert UTC to and from their local time; it's considerably harder to convert to and from some bizarre local time half way round the planet.

I'd be willing to bet that there are far more Slashdot readers who know how to convert from PST than know how to convert from UTC. Hell, I bet a good portion of people who read that didn't even know what you were talking about when you said UTC.

But maybe I'm overestimating the percentage of the Slashdot audience that is North American.

When you send a probe to a ringed gas giant (4, Funny)

gatkinso (15975) | more than 10 years ago | (#9399873)

you get to use local time! :P

Damn you Europeans! (2, Funny)

Hayzeus (596826) | more than 10 years ago | (#9399889)

And your damnable metric time!

Re:Damn you Europeans! (1)

isorox (205688) | more than 10 years ago | (#9400434)

My watch is nice simple binary. It's currently

1001/010100 (9:22 PM, Eastern European Daylight Time)

Re:Damn you Europeans! (1)

isorox (205688) | more than 10 years ago | (#9400472)

1001/010100 (9:22 PM, Eastern European Daylight Time)

NO, 9:20! Gorram it there goes my geekiness :( hoisted on their own pertard.

Re:Damn you Europeans! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9400458)

Use GMT. And bow down to the empire that was before you, you fat american slob.

Re:When it's actually arriving (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9399937)

I think you might be off by an hour.. Your post was around 10:30 pacific time.. That means three and a half hours from now will be 1:56 pacific.

Re:When it's actually arriving (indeed) (3, Interesting)

Billy the Mountain (225541) | more than 10 years ago | (#9399974)

the probe is doing the close flyby at 2056 UTC (i.e. about two and a half hours from now

Sorry to confuse the issue even more, but since the probe is 80 light minutes from the earth, does that mean that 2056 UTC is when it's actually happening, or is that when we finally find out that it happened 80 minutes in the past?

BTM

In other news (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9399812)

Astronomers have spotted Chandler Bing on a direct course for Uranus :D

They have audio from Phoebe, too: (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9399821)

...zzttt crackle crackle ...

Smelly cat, smelly cat
What are they feeding you?
Smelly cat, smelly cat
It's not your fault ....

Everything is a moon (2, Interesting)

D3 (31029) | more than 10 years ago | (#9399867)

Saturn has billions of "moons" if something that small (137 miles?!?) is considered one. The composition of the rings alone makes up a ton. So why is this one more interesting than others?

Re:Everything is a moon (4, Informative)

bhima (46039) | more than 10 years ago | (#9400028)

It has a retrograde orbit

Re:Everything is a moon (2, Informative)

wwest4 (183559) | more than 10 years ago | (#9400107)

Not only that, it's a really eccentric, far-flung orbit. It's marginally more interesting than the "normal" satellites of Saturn, at least based on what we know about them, which is admittedly not much.

What's wrong with you people (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9400182)

The slashdot write up ALREADY says:

"Phoebe is interesting in that it maintains a retrograde orbit around Saturn."

Someone asks "why is Phoebe is interesting", gets modded up.

Someone answers "it has a retrograde orbits", gets modded up.

Jesus.

Re:Everything is a moon (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9400060)

137 miles is actually reasonably large. Phoebe is more or less as equally interesting as the other moons. Over the years we're going to get hi-res pics of pretty much all of them. Today is Phoebe's turn.

Re:Everything is a moon (2, Insightful)

kfg (145172) | more than 10 years ago | (#9400075)

The composition of the rings alone makes up a ton. So why is this one more interesting than others?

It isn't. It's just more accessable.

KFG

Re:Everything is a moon (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9400129)

The rings aren't made up of 220 km wide moons since the rings are 1 km thick. So it's not just "more accessible", it's totally different.

Re:Everything is a moon (1)

kfg (145172) | more than 10 years ago | (#9400256)

. . .it's totally different.

That's entirely possible. We'll know for sure when we can directly compare samples of each.

Making both equally interesting.

KFG

Re:Everything is a moon (3, Informative)

barakn (641218) | more than 10 years ago | (#9400353)

As a captured Kuiper Belt object, it may consist of relatively unaltered material from the birth of the solar system. The ring material, on the other hand, is constantly altering itself due to incessant collisions.

And the pictures arrive when? (1)

aelbric (145391) | more than 10 years ago | (#9399949)

Anyone have info on when the pics will make the transit and be broadcast? The Cassini site at JPL seems to be acting weird ATM. Looks like NASA can send a probe to Saturn but can't build a website to resist the /. effect.

Re:And the pictures arrive when? (1)

WormholeFiend (674934) | more than 10 years ago | (#9400190)

Call it a hunch, but I'd think that JPL and NASA arent using their web server(s) to download images from the probe.

Re:And the pictures arrive when? (1)

aelbric (145391) | more than 10 years ago | (#9400361)

I realize that.

I meant that I can't reach the website to find out when the pictures will be posted somewhere. Does anyone have that information?

Inability to post in understandable language is the Friday effect :)

Question (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9399959)

Why can't we see Saturn behind Phoebe if the probe is going toward both?

Re:Question (2, Informative)

wwest4 (183559) | more than 10 years ago | (#9400135)

Phoebe is really far from Saturn. Also, there may be some gravitational slingshotting in the course (not sure how severe, since Phoebe's mass is small) so the path to saturn may not be a straight line in the geometric sense.

Privatize Space? (1)

fimbulvetr (598306) | more than 10 years ago | (#9399965)

When are we gonna privatize space so commericial entities can quickly outpace NASA?

Re:Privatize Space? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9400036)

When are we gonna privatize space so commericial entities can quickly outpace NASA?

Tomorrow. Why do you ask?

Re:Privatize Space? (1)

fimbulvetr (598306) | more than 10 years ago | (#9400071)

Tomorrow?

AFAIK, the closest we will be coming is in 10 days:

http://www.xprize.org/press/release_055.html

I ask because the commercial benefits of space will be, well, out of this world. The human race will actually have something to focus on as opposed to worrying about some silly terrorists all the time.

Re:Privatize Space? (1)

Patrik_AKA_RedX (624423) | more than 10 years ago | (#9400088)

It's happening right now. Exciting times ahead. Better pay attention to it, 'cus this is something you'll be telling to your (grand)children.

See X-prize.

That's no moon... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9399977)

That's no Moon... It's a space station!?

Protests during the launch (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9399992)

About all that nasty radioactive power it had on board. Going to contaminate the entire cosmos!

Typo in article (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9400005)

Insites = Insights

Anticipation (4, Informative)

amightywind (691887) | more than 10 years ago | (#9400024)

The newest images of Phoebe are already thousands of times better than the previous ones taken by the Voyager 2 mission in 1981.

No, but it is hoped they will be. At best, the newest released images are 10x better than Voyager. Expect the high res images later today. You are getting ahead of yourself.

Captured asteroid? (4, Informative)

barakn (641218) | more than 10 years ago | (#9400160)

This has lead to the hypothesis that it is an ancient asteroid that has been captured by the gravitational pull from Saturn

Phoebe is actually believed to be a captured Kuiper Belt object (KBO). This means its composition might be very icy/organic, making it more like a non-active comet than an asteroid.

Why is the asteroid ancient? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9400163)

Was it originally observed by the Greeks?

Tough to read... (1)

rice_burners_suck (243660) | more than 10 years ago | (#9400302)

Phoebe is interesting in that it maintains a retrograde orbit around Saturn. ... Phoebe may provide some important insights into the composition of early building blocks of our planets. Phoebe was discovered in 1898 by American astronomer William Pickering.

Weren't you in class the day they told you not to start every sentence with the same word? :-)

At least you didn't start each sentence with "I"...

Cassini-Huygens Reaches Phoebe Posted by michael on Friday June 11, @01:20PM from the bulls-eye dept. Anonymous Explorer writes "The Cassini-Huygens probe is set to fly by the largest outer Saturn moon of I today. Cassini will be roughly 2000 km from the surface of I at 1:56 Pacific time Friday, June 11. Thats pretty darn close. The newest images of I are already thousands of times better than the previous ones taken by the Voyager 2 mission in 1981. I is interesting in that it maintains a retrograde orbit around Saturn. This has lead to the hypothesis that it is an ancient asteroid that has been captured by the gravitational pull from Saturn. I may provide some important insights into the composition of early building blocks of our planets. I was discovered in 1898 by American astronomer William Pickering. As always, discussion about this mission can be found at #cassini on irc.freenode.net."
Heh heh... Just giving you a hard time.

Re:Tough to read... (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9400422)

In memory of Ronald Wilson Reagan. We will never forget you, though you forgot us, and if we were poor, you didn't even know we existed.

Huygens probe is going to fail Titan mission (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9400438)

just found out the ESA built that portion. needless to say it is going to fail :-(
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