Personal Liberty Digest™ will be upgraded this weekend to reflect a dynamic new look and mobile-friendly viewing to enhance your experience! Plus, we'll be providing even more of the compelling content you've come to expect, delivered in a whole new way!

  Comments Subscribe to Personal Liberty News Feed Subscribe to Personal Liberty

Study Finds ‘Rain’ From Saturn’s Rings

PASADENA, Calif., (UPI) — A U.S.-U.K. study is tracking rain on Saturn — a cascade of charged water particles that flow into the planet’s atmosphere from its rings, NASA says.

The study, involving observations funded by NASA and analysis led by the University of Leicester, has determined there is more of this cosmic “rainfall” affecting the atmosphere across larger areas of the planet than previously thought.

As the particles flow down from the rings they influence the composition and temperature structure of parts of Saturn’s upper atmosphere, creating variations in the apparent brightness of regions there, researchers report in the study, published in the journal Nature.

“Saturn is the first planet to show significant interaction between its atmosphere and ring system,” Leicester postgraduate researcher James O’Donoghue said. “The main effect of ring rain is that it acts to ‘quench’ the ionosphere of Saturn. In other words, this rain severely reduces the electron densities in regions in which it falls.”

Researchers said the study would help in understanding the origin and evolution of Saturn’s ring system and changes in the planet’s atmosphere.

“It turns out that a major driver of Saturn’s ionospheric environment and climate across vast reaches of the planet are ring particles located some 36,000 miles overhead,” study co-author Kevin Baines of NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif., said. “The ring particles affect both what species of particles are in this part of the atmosphere and where it is warm or cool.”

UPI - United Press International, Inc.

Since 1907, United Press International (UPI) has been a leading provider of critical information to media outlets, businesses, governments and researchers worldwide.

Facebook Conversations

Join the Discussion:
View Comments to “Study Finds ‘Rain’ From Saturn’s Rings”

Comment Policy: We encourage an open discussion with a wide range of viewpoints, even extreme ones, but we will not tolerate racism, profanity or slanderous comments toward the author(s) or comment participants. Make your case passionately, but civilly. Please don't stoop to name calling. We use filters for spam protection. If your comment does not appear, it is likely because it violates the above policy or contains links or language typical of spam. We reserve the right to remove comments at our discretion.

Is there news related to personal liberty happening in your area? Contact us at


Sign Up For Personal Liberty Digest™!

PL Badge

Welcome to,
America's #1 Source for Libertarian News!

To join our group of freedom-loving individuals and to get alerts as well as late-breaking conservative news from Personal Liberty Digest™...

Privacy PolicyYou can opt out at any time. We protect your information like a mother hen. We will not sell or rent your email address to anyone for any reason.