Those findings open up intriguing new possibilities for life in Enceladus’ subsurface watery abyss. Infrared images of Saturn’s moon Enceladus as seen by the Cassini spacecraft, which orbited Saturn, weaving among its moons, from 2004 to 2017. A new analysis of Cassini date shows that Enceladus’ north pole might be resurfaced by fresh ice deposits. Are there as-yet unseen plumes at the moon’s north pole as well? Weak geysers at this pole could be the reason. Image via NASA/ JPL-Caltech/ University of Arizona/ LPG/ CNRS/ University of Nantes/ Space Science Institute. Saturn's moon Enceladus shows fresh ice: More geysers on the tiny iceworld? Fangrrls is about kicking down doors, breaking boundaries and celebrating female fans with fun, witty and entertaining content. Lead author Christopher Glein, of SwRI, said in a statement: By understanding the composition of the plume, we can learn about what the ocean is like, how it got to be this way and whether it provides environments where life as we know it could survive. Credit: NASA/JPL/Space Science Institute. Bottom: (left) The north pole and (right) the south, showing the tiger stripes and fresh ice from geysers. VIMS took a lot of spectra of Enceladus over time, mapping the entire surface. The infrared images from Cassini are providing new clues about how geologically active Enceladus is, not only at its south pole with the dramatic watery plumes, but elsewhere on the this little icy world as well. Enceladus’ geysers originate from the subsurface ocean, venting through cracks in the icy surface at the south pole. The new infrared images, from Cassini’s Visible and Infrared Mapping Spectrometer (VIMS), are the most detailed ever made of Enceladus’ surface from data sent back by the Cassini mission, which ended in September 2017. During its mission, Cassini flew through through the water vapor plumes several times, analyzing what is in them. Now, thanks to these infrared eyes, you can go back in time and say that one large region in the northern hemisphere appears also young and was probably active not that long ago, in geologic timelines. This doesn’t prove there is life there yet, but the evidence indicates there well could be. In this image, the famous tiger stripes fissures – from which water erupts in strange alien geysers – can be seen at the moon’s south pole. Top: (left) The leading hemisphere which faces into its orbital direction and shows signs of new deposits, (middle) the Saturn’s facing hemisphere, and (right) the trailing hemisphere. There are a series of them, long parallel grooves nicknamed "tiger stripes," though to me it looks more like deep gashes left by a tiger's claws. Scientists using mission data from NASA's Cassini spacecraft have identified 101 distinct geysers erupting on Saturn's icy moon Enceladus. This was especially true after Cassini later confirmed that the water was originating from a global salty ocean beneath the icy surface, similar to Europa. Saturn’s moon Enceladus is famous for the huge water-vapor geysers at its south pole, which are thought to originate from a global ocean deep beneath the moon’s outer ice crust. Like Saturn’s moon Enceladus, icy Europa is thought to have an ocean … Scientists using Cassini data now have evidence for fresh ice at the moon’s north pole, too. on Facebook, Share Saturn's moon Enceladus shows fresh ice: More geysers on the tiny iceworld? Water-vapor geysers erupt from cracks at the south pole of Saturn’s moon Enceladus. Or the fresh ice might be due to water forced up from the subsurface ocean through cracks in the moon’s icy crust. It might have weak geysers, or water being forced up from the moon’s subsurface ocean through cracks in its icy crust. Could it be more geysers for this fascinating ice moon? We came up with a new technique for analyzing the plume composition to estimate the concentration of dissolved CO2 in the ocean. Unsurprisingly, this makes planetary scientists extremely interested in the tiny 500 km wide moon (about the same size as my home state of Colorado). on Reddit, New results from old observations made by the Cassini spacecraft mission. Image via NASA/ JPL-Caltech. In these detailed infrared images of Saturn's icy moon Enceladus, reddish areas indicate fresh ice that has been deposited on the surface. Using NASA's Cassini spacecraft orbiting … It's a great legacy for fantastic mission. In 2015, the blog was renamed as Planetaria. VIMS collected light reflected off Saturn, its rings and its ten largest icy moons. The new maps were made using Cassini's Visual and Infrared Mapping Spectrometer (VIMS), which took spectra of the moon's surface in visible and infrared light. There's a subsurface ocean there under a thick ice shell, and possibly a rocky core that makes the water salty. on Twitter, Share Saturn's moon Enceladus shows fresh ice: More geysers on the tiny iceworld? Saturn's icy moon Enceladus conceals a salty ocean beneath its frozen surface, scientists now suspect. Now, scientists studying new global mosaic infrared images of Enceladus, taken by NASA’s Cassini spacecraft, have announced that they’ve found the first evidence that the moon’s north pole has also been painted with a fresh coat of ice fairly recently, geologically-speaking. Except every week in your inbox. While interested in all aspects of space exploration, his primary passion is planetary science. He started his blog The Meridiani Journal in 2005, which was a chronicle of planetary exploration. Now scientists have evidence that the moon’s north polar region is also geologically active, although on a smaller scale. It's a complex task, but that's just what the planetary scientists did in the new work, creating a global map that corrects for these issues. There's an interactive version you can play with, too; click and drag to move it around. Image via NASA/ JPL-Caltech/ Space Science Institute. Interestingly, that area is directly over where some "hot spots" in the sea floor are predicted to be, so it's possible that the warmer water rises and slowly leaks up onto the surface there. Saturn's icy moon Enceladus has one of the most amazing features in all the solar system: a series of huge geysers erupting from cracks near its south pole, water ice blasting into space due to huge pressures under the surface. Life thrives in these spots on Earth, so that would make the idea of life on (under!) Since this is basically seawater being spewn out into space, this provides important clues as to what conditions are like in the ocean. There's a subsurface ocean there under a thick ice shell, and possibly a rocky core that makes the water salty. Image via NASA/ JPL-Caltech/ SwRI. He has also written for Universe Today and SpaceFlight Insider, and has also been published in The Mars Quarterly and has done supplementary writing for the well-known iOS app Exoplanet for iPhone and iPad. Like Comic-Con. Saturn’s moon Enceladus is famous for the huge water-vapor geysers at its south pole, which are thought to originate from a global ocean deep … The terrain is much more cratered than in the south, but the infrared images in the new study – and the cracks in the surface seen here – show that there has been at least some geological activity in the region. In 2011, he started writing about space on a freelance basis, and now currently writes for AmericaSpace and Futurism (part of Vocal). Fresh ice almost certainly means water from below the surface has made its way up. As the water vapor re-freezes in Enceladus’ extremely tenuous atmosphere, it forms ice particles that fall back down and coat the moon’s south polar region with fresh ice.