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Photo of the Day: Saturn’s Sea Sponge Satellite

posted: 04/28/15
by: Discovery.com Staff
SATURN’S SPONGE-LIKE MOON HYPERION
NASA/JPL/Space Science Institute

This look like a sea sponge, but looks can be deceiving!

NASA's Cassini spacecraft captured this fascinating 2005 photograph of Hyperion, one of Saturn's outer moons. Astronomers attribute the moon's porous appearance to its low surface density; the moon is believed to be comprised mostly of water ice.

During the flyby, Hyperion sent a barrage of charged particles hurtling toward Cassini; they delivered an electrifying 200-volt shock to the spacecraft. The flyby was only the second time that astronomers encountered another charged natural object in space.

Cassini has been orbiting Saturn since 2004. In those 11 years, the spacecraft has made a number of important discoveries. Just last year, Cassini reported strong evidence of a subterranean ocean on Saturn's moon Enceladus, which NASA then named one of the "most likely places in our solar system to host microbial life".

Click here for more information from the ESA

Learn more about Saturn:

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