CICLOPS: Cassini Imaging Central Laboratory for OPerationS

Sector 6

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We Came. We Saw. It's Done.
dholmes      
09-15-2017  06:36:11

I usually am a wordy guy, but this day words fail. So if I may let me paraphrase Captain Kirk's farwell eulogy to Spock from "Wrath of Kahn".
"We are assembled here today to pay final respects to our honored dead (Cassini). And yet it should be noted that in the midst of our sorrow, this death takes place in the shadow of new life, the sunrise of a new world; a world that our beloved comrade gave its life to protect and nourish. She (Carolyn) did not feel this sacrifice a vain or empty one, and we will not debate her profound wisdom at these proceedings. Of my friend,
(Dr. Carolyn Porco) I can only say this: of all the souls I have encountered in my travels, hers is the most... human.

Enceladus Flyby 'Rev 223'
dholmes      
10-16-2015  06:05:49

Who cannot marvel at what we can so easily access with just a few clicks, which belie mountains of work and research by the Cassini team. Infinite kudos!
The Day the Earth Smiled
dholmes      
11-14-2013  05:53:34

The difference from Voyager's "pale blue dot" and the Cassini photo of Earth is that with Cassini we have a strong perspective of scale with the rings of Saturn. Thus giving us a the "neighborhood effect" from one neighbor of the solar system looking out the kitchen window, if you will, to another across the backyard of space. Always in awe of Carolyn's work.

A Very Special Day in the Life of Planet Earth
dholmes      
07-23-2013  06:46:11

A true triumph for our planet. Does this not take our breath away as well as inspire us to go forth and explore more of "what's out there"?
A Day To Celebrate the Pale Blue Dot
dholmes      
06-21-2013  06:26:16

I am personally looking forward to July 19th. Back in 1990 when Carl Sagan requested Voyager 1's camera to photograph Earth. Our "pale blue dot" as it were, only measured 0.12 pixel in size aganist the vast backdrop of space. This was of course just to show how truly small we are in relation to the basic infinitude of space. This time, however, what we will see is our celestial home in relation to our neighbor Saturn. Thus Earth will be visibily more relevant in size as well as aesthetically pleasing to look at...and beyond. Thanks Carolyn for the heads up.
dholmes      
06-21-2013  06:25:53

I am personally looking forward to July 19th. Back in 1990 when Carl Sagan requested Voyager 1's camera to photograph Earth. Our "pale blue dot" as it were, only measured 0.12 pixel in size aganist the vast backdrop of space. This was of course just to show how truly small we are in relation to the basic infinitude of space. This time, however, what we will see is our celestial home in relation to our neighbor Saturn. Thus Earth will be visibily more relevant in size as well as aesthetically pleasing to look at...and beyond. Thanks Carolyn for the heads up.

The Saturn Storm Chronicles
dholmes      
11-18-2011  12:37:35

Are the bright reflecting colored gases indicating highest atmospheric elevation due to reflectance of sunlight? If so the darker gases then must be at a lower elevation in Saturn's atmosphere, and by that reasoning (bad or good) would lead to subduction of the heavier lower gases by the lighter (higher atmospheric elements)gases of Saturn?
dholmes      
11-18-2011  12:05:53

Yes I would like to weigh in also about the need for a spectral legend or graph as well as a convection range (elevation) chart of some sort to better understand the physical processes going on. Thanks.
dholmes      
11-18-2011  10:54:53

This is beyond expectations of anything I could imagine. The importance of work like this provides mankind a blueprint for future space travel to our own Solar System and hopefully to the very stars of our own night sky. Good job Carolyn and crew!

Enceladus Rev 155 Raw Preview
dholmes      
10-20-2011  06:00:52

That may be true mhovland as in your example of serpentinization, but if you study the history of science and discovery in general you will notice that there are many pieces to the puzzle of "what's out there". Forgive this simple analogy but allow me to mention the following. Say for instance you are at the beach and you are standing on the shore looking out. You see nothing but a flat blue lifeless horizon of ocean. No signs of life anywhere. A friend comes along and invites you to go with him on a plane ride up the coast. Now you are flying over the same beach looking down, and you notice something. Less than 50 yards from where you were standing is a school of mullet being chased by 5 or 6 large Tiger sharks that moments before you never knew were there. That is basically one of the principles of discovery. Its all a matter of changing one's point of view.

Enceladus Rev 153 Raw Preview
dholmes      
09-16-2011  20:27:27

Excellent as always for Carolyn and her team. After seeing these wonderful images including past meteor impacts on the surface that quickly refroze. One might think of the article in Nature Geoscience (DOI: 10.1038/NGEO383)concerning amino acids forming after their host meteor impacting on the surface of a distant past Earth. These impacts brought forth an organic soup in Earth's primeval oceans. What kind of possible organic soup might have existed on Enceladus and what now has possibly evolved in that warm ocean below the frozen crust?

Hyperion Rev 152 Raw Preview
dholmes      
08-29-2011  09:27:54

I am home sick today which gave me time to revel in these wonderful images of Hyperion. We are very fortunate that the Cassini mission is an ongoing one especially in these times of budget cuts, and humankind is the continual benefactor in its evolving understanding of Saturn and its moons. That said keep up the good work!!
A Great Northern Storm
dholmes      
07-12-2011  15:40:48

Life on Saturn. Not too sure Kevin, but on Enceladus oh yeah I truly think so.
dholmes      
07-12-2011  15:37:41

What about the greenish (for lack of a better word)crown or head at the front of the massive storm. Is that an ammonia cloud front being reflected back by the sun? If not what gaseous compound is it?

Saturn Storm Rev 142 Raw Preview
dholmes      
12-28-2010  05:28:49

I disagree with the impact theory. Compare the Shoemaker-Levi 9 (21) fragments impact photos that hit Jupiter back in July of 94 then look at what is clearly a monster storm on Saturn. The shape of the impacts on Jupiter were more defined and rounded not like what we see here. Of course I defer to greater minds on this site than mine, but for now that's what I surmise.
Have we discovered evidence for life on Titan?
dholmes      
06-08-2010  12:27:58

Tp further comment on possible methane life forms maybe they are like earth's prolific worms like the ones that live near hydrothermal vents in the ocean at temperatures that can exceed 100 degrees Celsius (212 degrees Fahrenheit), or worms living in ice on Alaskan glaciers at zero degrees Celsius (32 degrees Fahrenheit). In other words life seems to adapt, a fact that may be to the extreme on Titan. It is nice however that the strongest possibility of life yet so far found has come to us through Carolyn's work with Cassini.

dholmes      
06-08-2010  05:40:43

In answer to rdstancy, to my knowledge no, but an excellent idea all the same. But what life are we talking about, microbial or more complex?

Enceladus "Rev 120" Flyby Raw Preview #4
dholmes      
11-04-2009  05:59:28

As they say "X" marks the spot. Can't think of a better place to begin a high probability search for any type of life "out there" than Enceladus. Don't know why some people at NASA want to waste future resources on Jupiter's moon, Europa.

At Last ... 'Star Trek' Opens!
dholmes      
05-21-2009  06:11:38

I would like to add a further comment now that I have gone back and read the earlier ones. The visual relationship between Titan and Saturn are just fine. Do look at the links in Carolyn's comment and that should disabuse some of the member's over analytical proclivities. I am a GIS (Geographic Information Systems) expert with a govt. agency here in Atlanta, Ga., and ever day I go through mounds of visual data. When I first saw that shot of Titan and Saturn, no alarm bells went off, no red flags, nor anything else but a sense of pride that she had that influence on something so indemic and personal to Star Trek fans everywhere. Here's to the next adventure with maybe NCC 1701 coming up on the moon Encaladus with the new crew getting ready for their next adventure, and maybe a guest shot with the science advisor as a crew member.
dholmes      
05-21-2009  05:43:05

I finally broke away from my un-trek wife and kids and saw the movie last night.
As a member the 1st generation of Star Trek (1960's) fans I thought they did a great job to keep the young actors in character with the original cast. Yes the future for Star Trek movies will be in the past. I could see a whole series of new adventures for the crew of the enterprise, who knows maybe they could keep going on until the new fans will look back on this movie as the beginning. I enjoyed of course as did we all Carolyn's influence with Titan and Saturn. I hope in the next Star Trek movie that her influence will continue, and put her name closer to the front of the credit listing (was still waiting until the theatre emptied until finally her name appeared). Good job.

Flight over Iapetus
dholmes      
11-26-2008  09:54:49

Are those white caps off in the distance. What type and when did this techtonic activity occur in rth early formation of Iapetus. I'm a late comer to this sight but it's at the top of my internet list.