The Rings of Saturn

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How do we know what we know about the composition of the rings of Saturn? How are we able to determine their thickness, and that they are made of water ice and rock debris?

In: Planetary Science

3 Answers

Anonymous 0 Comments

we can detect the molecules that make up the rings (and most other viewable items in the Cosmos) by deciphering them using different waves of light (microwave, etc)

Anonymous 0 Comments

[The Cassini probe](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cassini%E2%80%93Huygens)
used its [spectrometer to determine the composition of the rings.](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Optical_spectrometer)

Anonymous 0 Comments

Well, we’ve sent probes to Saturn to check it out and tell us about it. Pioneer 11 and Voyager 1 and 2 did flybys and gave us info. Then we sent Cassini that spent 13 years orbiting Saturn and sending us loads of images as well as radiation and magnetic field measurements. What we found was there were a buttload of moons, most of them very small and that the rings are really thin. Like 100 meters thick. Nasa has the images up on their website. Saturn is really beautiful.