Mimas Mimics Pac Man

Mimas Mimics Pac Man

Saturn’s peculiar moon Mimas is even stranger than previously believed, as the latest images released from NASA’s Cassini explorer reveal.

“The highest-resolution-yet temperature map and images of Saturn’s icy moon Mimas obtained by NASA’s Cassini spacecraft reveal surprising patterns on the surface of the small moon, including unexpected hot regions that resemble ‘Pac-Man’ eating a dot, and striking bands of light and dark in crater walls.

“‘Other moons usually grab the spotlight, but it turns out Mimas is more bizarre than we thought it was,’ said Linda Spilker, Cassini project scientist at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif. ‘It has certainly given us some new puzzles.’”

The image on the right above is a temperature map which effectively demonstrates what are, at present, inexplicably sharply patterned temperature differences on the surface of the little moon.

For more information, see the original NASA article noted above, or visit NASA’s Cassini Mission page and NASA’s Saturn–Cassini Equinox page.

Published in: on March 30, 2010 at 11:43 am  Leave a Comment  

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