LUKE DONES, a member of Cassini's imaging team, explores planetary rings
, the dynamics of comets and asteroids, and the impact history of the solar system at Southwest Research Institute in Boulder, Colorado.
Both Chancia and Hedman are experts on planetary rings
, as they study Saturn's rings using data from NASA's Cassini spacecraft.
The objects of their research include comets, asteroids, planetary rings
, and Trojan asteroids.
comet tails, planetary rings
, and star-forming regions) for over four decades.
These planetary rings
are the first found outside the solar system.
Since young stars and disks are born in molecular clouds, giant clouds of dust and gas, the role of dust becomes an important feature of understanding planet formation; it relates not only to the formation of rocky, Earth-like planets and the cores of giant Jupiter-like planets but also to that of moons, planetary rings
, comets, and asteroids.
The color blue made it very unique among planetary rings
, which are usually red because the particles are too small to be affected by the plant's forces.
For instance, raised lines represent the color blue, and dotted lines denote planetary rings
This latest analysis helps fill in that story with detection of impactors of a size that we weren't previously able to detect directly," said co-author Jeff Cuzzi, a Cassini interdisciplinary scientist specializing in planetary rings
and dust at NASA's Ames Research Center in Moffett Field, Calif.