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About Saturn & Its Moons

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Magnetosphere - Recent Discoveries

Artist's concept: Enceladus Atmosphere
During Cassini's three close flybys of Enceladus -- Feb. 17, March 9 and July 14, 2005 -- the magnetometer instrument detected a bending of the magnetic field around Enceladus
Before Cassini arrived at Saturn scientists had only brief glimpses at what Saturn's magnetosphere was like. The knowledge was based on flybys by the Pioneer and Voyager spacecraft in the late 1970s and early 1980s. But these spacecraft -- from entry to exit -- only spent a matter of days in Saturn's magnetosphere.

Equipped with a much more capable suite of instruments and much more time in orbit around Saturn, Cassini is confirming some of the earlier measurements but also revealing some remarkable differences.