One of Saturn’s more mysterious moons, Dione, was just visited by NASA’s Cassini spacecraft. So close in fact that Dione came within 321 miles of the moon, according to Clarkesville online.
As Dione made a pass on the mysterious satellite, the craft used it sensors to obtain a significant amount of data on a region known as “Eurotas Chasmata”. Thirty five years ago, voyager made observations that revealed bright and wispy streaks of light. Scientists theorized that these were just light being reflected by reflective material brought to the surface of the moon by its inner geology. Something similar to an ice volcano.
However, new data from Cassini suggests that these areas are actually networks of canyons that have extremely bright walls. These are called linea.
Cassini’s main mission this time is to look for small particles coming from Dione. These particles are a sign that there may be some geological activity beneath the surface of the mysterious moon. More images are expected of the moon soon.
This pass was the craft’s 4th pass over the moon and required the special use of propulsion maneuvers to get the ship right towards the moon.