Cassini Imaging Science: Initial results on Saturn's atmosphere

C. C. Porco, E. Baker, J. Barbara, K. Beurle, A. Brahic, J. A. Burns, S. Charnoz, N. Cooper, D. D. Dawson, A. D. Del Genio, T. Denk, L. Dones, U. Dyudina, M. W. Evans, B. Giese, K. Grazier, P. Helfenstein, A. P. Ingersoll, R. A. Jacobson, T. V. JohnsonA. McEwen, C. D. Murray, G. Neukum, W. M. Owen, J. Perry, T. Roatsch, J. Spitale, S. Squyres, P. Thomas, M. Tiscareno, E. Turtle, A. R. Vasavada, J. Veverka, R. Wagner, R. West

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

90 Scopus citations

Abstract

The Cassini Imaging Science Subsystem (ISS) began observing Saturn in early February 2004, From analysis of cloud motions through early October 2004, we report vertical wind shear in Saturn's equatorial jet and a maximum wind speed of ∼375 meters per second, a value that differs from both Hubble Space Telescope and Voyager values. We also report a particularly active narrow southern mid-latitude region in which dark ovals are observed both to merge with each other and to arise from the eruptions of large, bright storms. Bright storm eruptions are correlated with Saturn's electrostatic discharges, which are thought to originate from lightning.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1243-1247
Number of pages5
JournalScience
Volume307
Issue number5713
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 25 2005

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    Porco, C. C., Baker, E., Barbara, J., Beurle, K., Brahic, A., Burns, J. A., Charnoz, S., Cooper, N., Dawson, D. D., Del Genio, A. D., Denk, T., Dones, L., Dyudina, U., Evans, M. W., Giese, B., Grazier, K., Helfenstein, P., Ingersoll, A. P., Jacobson, R. A., ... West, R. (2005). Cassini Imaging Science: Initial results on Saturn's atmosphere. Science, 307(5713), 1243-1247. https://doi.org/10.1126/science.1107691