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International Edition Winners 2009: India (Grade 5-6: Target 2)

International Edition Winners 2009: India (Grade 5-6: Target 2)


M.Ram Pranav
Tethys and Rings
Target 2: Tethys and Saturn's Rings
M.Ram Pranav

6th Grade; Teacher: Ms.Sarvani
St. Paul’s High School


" I have chosen target 2. The picture of Tethys and apart of Saturn rings have given me great and wonderful ideas.

Recent results of Chandrayaan I for Water on moon surprised me a lot particularly because it was also supported by results of VIMS instrument in Cassini. With Cassini having got only two opportunities to study Tethys and the recent magnetometer instrument suggesting Tethys adding to E ring I feel we should focus on this target than any other to bring out new truths.

Compared to Titan we should study Tethys in order to understand about system of Saturn properly. Because Titan has lot of Nitrogen and complex molecules. And I think Titan is not native of like many of Saturn's 61 moons. Whereas Tethys is the fifth largest moon of sixty one moon's so it can solve many mysteries and guide us in knowing the nature of Saturn's moon's. The craters seen on the moon are scientifically interesting. Based on this new discoveries can also be done.

Right from Galileo in whose honor this year we celebrate international year of astronomy, ancient astronomers always wondered about rings. Particularly A ring which was most popular. By choosing this target and using instruments on the spacecraft I will learn more than what ancient observers did about special features of A ring and F ring.

I was excited to know about Prometheus and Pandora. The movement of these two moons along the F ring is attractive as they act like shepherd guiding the particles there. Scientists believe small moons may exist in this ring which I would like to discover as a scientist for a day. Importantly I like to know reasons behind their movement in such unique manner.

I always wondered if life exists anywhere else in the universe. Hence like most scientists I am eager to know if Tethys supports any life. Further change in Saturn's F ring in few hours is a unique quality of its own. This unique aspect gives greater opportunity to study about the various processes behind such change.

Not only that the multiple moons sharing an orbit, the surface being heavy and lightly cratered, liquid methane on titan surface motivated me to find similar aspects and choose this target as not much known about this Tethys.

Tethys has canyon on it (Ithaca Chasm) the formation of it is to be explored. The major doubt is whether the liquid in side Tethys were cooled or was it an asteroid hit?

With so many questions in mind and various ideas to explore about Tethys. I have chosen target-II as a scientist for a day.
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