Credits: Getty
Credits: Getty


Deep Space Chatting: Saturn Might Be Interacting With Its Moon Enceladus

Written By Anirudh Sunilkumar | Mumbai | Published:


  • Plasmic waves from Saturn were observed to be directed towards its moon Enceladus
  • Enceladus is an interesting planet that possesses subsurface oceans that might support microbial life

In a remarkable observation made by NASA, powerful and dynamic plasmic waves were reported to be originating from the planet towards its rings and its moon Enceladus. For the first time, NASA observed that the plasmic waves traveled in magnetic lines directed towards its moon.

The following video shows a thoroughly cleaned 16 minute recording that was compressed to 28.5 seconds.

"Enceladus is this little generator going around Saturn, and we know it is a continuous source of energy," planetary scientist Ali Sulaiman said in a NASA statement.

"Now we find that Saturn responds by launching signals in the form of plasma waves, through the circuit of magnetic field lines connecting it to Enceladus hundreds of thousands of miles away." the statement added.

NASA’s Cassini spacecraft captured the data back on September 2, 2017, after which it plunged into the Saturn’s atmosphere.

"Researchers converted the recording of plasma waves into a "whooshing" audio file that we can hear — in the same way, a radio translates electromagnetic waves into music," NASA the statement said.

"In other words, Cassini detected electromagnetic waves in the audio frequency range and on the ground, we can amplify and play those signals through a speaker. The recording time was compressed from 16 minutes to 28.5 seconds.

However, one might not hear these sounds when traveling between Saturn and its moon as the recorded sound has been compressed and its wave frequency was reduced by a factor of five.

Enceladus is considered as one of the most interesting moons of Saturn which ranks high on possible chances to sustain life. The icy moon is believed to possess a subsurface ocean that could be habitable for microbial organisms.