Friday, August 5, 2022

Saturn Facts: Explore the Amazing Ring Planet

Adorned with beautiful glowing rings, Saturn is often called "the jewel of the Solar System". Soon, the planet will reach its opposition and appear at its peak of brightness and size in our skies. In today's article, we'll tell you more about this formidable gas giant.


Facts about the planet Saturn


Planet type : gas giant

Radius : 58,232 km

Mass : 5.6834×10^26 kg

Aphelion : 1.51 billion km

Perihelion : 1.35 billion km

Average distance from Earth : 1.4 billion km

Surface temperature : −185 °C to −122 °C

Length of the solar day : 10 h 32 min

Sidereal day length : 10 h 33 min

Year length : 29.4571 Earth years

Age : 4.503 billion years

Named after : Roman god of agriculture


How big is Saturn?


Along with Jupiter, Uranus and Neptune, Saturn is considered a giant planet. Let's find out some curious details about the size of this incredible planet.


Saturn size


With a radius of 58,232 kilometers, Saturn is the second largest planet in our Solar System – only its gas giant companion, Jupiter, is larger. To make a trip around the planet's equator, you would have to travel a distance of 365,882 kilometers!


How many Earths fit inside Saturn?


Saturn's radius is about 9.5 times that of our planet; moreover, the gas giant is more than 95 times more massive. To give you a better idea of ​​the size of Saturn, we can say that about 764 Earths would fit inside the ringed planet.


Saturn's orbit and rotation

Every planet in the Solar System takes a certain amount of time to complete one orbit around the Sun and one rotation around its axis. Here on Earth, these periods last for 365.25 days and 24 hours, respectively, but on Saturn, it's all different.


How long is a day on Saturn?


Saturn has the second shortest day among the planets in the Solar System: it takes just 10 hours and 32 minutes to rotate once. Only Jupiter spins faster. Due to its high-speed rotation, Saturn is bulged at the equator and flattened at the poles.


How long is a year on Saturn?


Much like Jupiter, Saturn rotates very quickly on its axis but is in no hurry to complete a single orbit around the Sun. The speed at which Saturn orbits the Sun is considerably slow. A single year on the planet lasts 29.4571 Earth years or 10,759 Earth days.


How far is Saturn?


Saturn is the sixth planet from the Sun. Billions of kilometers separate it from the Sun and Earth.


What is the distance between Saturn and the Sun?


The ringed planet orbits the Sun at a distance of about 9.5 AU – 9.5 times the distance between Earth and our star. This distance is equal to 1.486 billion kilometers.


What is the distance between Saturn and Earth?


As Saturn and Earth travel through space, the distance between them is always changing. At the closest approach, the celestial bodies are about 1.195 billion kilometers away; at its most distant point, the separation between our planet and the gas giant is about 1.66 billion kilometers.


How long does it take to get to Saturn?


There are two factors that determine the duration of a trip to Saturn: the route selected for the mission and the speed of the spacecraft. For example, the Voyager 1 mission took 3 years and 2 months to arrive, while the Cassini spacecraft took 6 years and 9 months.

Johannes Kleper

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