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starstuffblog:

The Science Report

by Stuart Gary

Saturn’s outermost ring stuns astronomers

I’ve just written a story for ABC Science about new data showing that the biggest planetary ring in the solar system is much bigger than previously thought.

A new study, reported today in Nature, has found that Saturn’s outermost ring is nearly 300 times the size of the planet it orbits.

Nobody expected planetary rings to ever be this large, the textbooks all say that rings are small, located close to their planet.

In the previous study the ring was detected between distances of 128 and 207 Saturn radii, but new measurements using NASA’s WISE spacecraft have given the researchers a better picture and increased its size by 30 percent.

If you missed my radio report on the story and want to find out more, check out the online version at:
http://www.abc.net.au/science/articles/2015/06/11/4252429.htm

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