Tiger stripes on Enceladus

Tiger stripes on Enceladus

Fig. 10.21 . Saturnís enigmatic moon Enceladus is a jumbled world of fresh snow plains (middle), old cratered terrains (top), and prominent tiger stripe fractures (bottom, false color blue). The fissures spray ice particles, water vapor and organic compounds outward, some of them forming Saturnís E ring and others falling back on the moon. In the mosaic shown here, three prominent tiger stripes extend from the bottom center upwards toward the center. From left to right, they are named Alexandria Sulcus, Cairo Sulcus, and Baghdad Sulcus, the longest tiger stripe. Across the middle of the image, near the northern end of the tiger stripes, 90-degree bends curve along similar paths, starting in a direction parallel to each tiger stripe and then turning perpendicular. Changes in tectonic stresses most likely cause the bends and narrow ridges. This mosaic of images was obtained in visible light from the Cassini spacecraft on 21 November 2009. (Courtesy of NASA/JPL/SSI.)

Copyright 2010, Professor Kenneth R. Lang, Tufts University