Saturday, March 23, 2013

Where do Saturn's rings come from?

In the previous post, we looked at evidence that the Maori of Aotearoa / New Zealand were aware of the rings of Saturn and had stories and traditions describing Saturn as a beautiful and wayward woman who wears a circlet in her hair -- truly amazing in light of the fact that the rings of Saturn are not visible to the human eye, or even with telescopes of the type that Galileo built in 1610.  This evidence is very difficult to explain.

Equally mysterious is the question of where Saturn's rings came from in the first place.  In this article from February, 2012 published on the NASA website entitled "The Real Lord of the Rings,"  planetary scientist Jeff Cuzzi of NASA's Ames Research Center explains:  "After all this time we're still not sure about the origin of Saturn's rings. But lately there's a growing awareness that Saturn's rings can't be so old."

The reasons given for concluding that the rings are not the ancient remnants left over from the formation of Saturn or the solar system -- billions of years ago according to conventionally-accepted theories -- include 
  • the fact that they are still shiny and bright, undarkened by accumulated dust,
  • the fact that small moons orbiting through the outermost regions of the ring system are gaining angular momentum at the expense of the rings, and thus . . .
  • the fact that the rings will probably collapse into the giant planet within a period of time measured in millions of years.
"This is a young dynamical system," Dr. Cuzzi says.  Dr. Cuzzi won the prestigious Kuiper Prize in 2010 for his lifetime contributions to planetary sciences. 

Another reason for believing that Saturn's rings must be young was given by Dr. Cuzzi in an article published in January, 1985 in Sky & Telescope entitled "Ringed Planets -- Still Mysterious II."  In that article, he explained that expectations of "erosion" of the rings would suggest that they might be completely destroyed only 10,000 years after forming -- and that even if that figure is too low, the rate of loss poses a huge problem for explaining the existence of these rings for long periods of time.  Dr. Cuzzi writes:
Yet nonstop erosion poses a difficult problem for the very existence of Saturn's opaque rings -- the expected bombardment rate would pulverize the entire system in only 10,000 years!  Most of this material is merely redeposited elsewhere in the rings, but even if only a tiny fraction is truly lost (as ionized vapor, for example), it becomes a real trick to maintain the rings since the formation of the solar system.
The above passage was cited in a footnote by Dr. Walt Brown, the creator of the hydroplate theory, in a footnote to his discussion of planetary rings and their possible relationship to his theory.  According to Dr. Brown, "Planetary rings form when material is expelled from a moon or asteroid passing near a giant planet."  

His theory proposes that most of the asteroids and asteroid-like bodies in our solar system (including many of the irregularly-shaped moons orbiting various planets, including Saturn, which are likely captured asteroids) originated as material violently expelled from earth during the events surrounding a cataclysmic flood, and that asteroids and comets generally contain quantities of ice, originating from earth as water that was jetted out of the earth at tremendous velocities during the same cataclysm.  His discussion of the origin of asteroids and meteoroids begins on this page in his book and continues on for an entire chapter.

This previous post discusses some of the aspects of asteroids according to Dr. Brown's theory, and explains that:
Because larger asteroids are held together with a "weak glue" of ice (which originated in the water blasted into space along with the rocks during the violent explosion that initiated the global flood event), impacts from other space rocks sometimes cause this water to melt and to begin to vent into the vacuum of space. When this happens, asteroids resemble comets: in fact, comets and asteroids are pretty much the same animal, except that asteroids have spent most of their existence in closer orbits to the sun and most of them have lost all of their ice -- with some of the larger ones retaining icy mantles below the surface which are still subject to being released later on by impacts. Most comets, on the other hand, have wider orbits and still retain ice, which is still venting. 
In fact, as Dr. Brown points out, material venting from Saturn's moon Enceladus has now been confirmed as contributing to the material in that ring.  Here is a link to an article discussing evidence which suggests that the material coming from Enceladus does not originate from an "underground ocean" on that moon, as was proposed by some theorists.  In that article, one scientist says of the material jetting out of Enceladus: "It could still be warm ice vaporizing away into space. It could even be places where the crust rubs against itself from tidal motions and the friction creates liquid water that would then evaporate into space."  Such an explanation would certainly appear to fit in with the predictions of Dr. Brown's theory.

There is another proposal for the existence of Saturn's rings which, like Dr. Brown's hydroplate theory, stands outside of the pale of presently-accepted scientific orthodoxy (and remember that, in the words of the distinguished Dr. Cuzzi, orthodox theorists still have no settled explanation for the origin of Saturn's rings), and that is the idea that intelligent beings are creating them!

The above video shows some strange images of streaking objects cutting across Saturn's rings (in fact, the F-ring), including some objects whose path appears to turn back and forth a few times, taken by NASA spacecraft including Cassini.  Here is an article on the internet by someone caustically "debunking" the UFO theory, calling it "BS," and "crap," and "transparent nonsense," and asking why alien spacecraft would want to fly around in Saturn's rings.  The writer asks sarcastically: "So, aliens traveled across light-years to … circle Saturn for eons playing in the ring system. No doubt that would be fun, but it’s hard to imagine any other incentive."

However, those who propose the theory that some intelligence is actively creating the rings do offer an incentive.  In the video below, David Icke discusses some of the same footage and argues that a reason that malevolent intelligences might want to construct such rings could be to transmit or amplify frequencies with inimical effects upon men and women on earth:

There are other reasons to be cautious before simply eliminating any theory which proposes the activity of extraterrestrials (see this previous post for a discussion, among others).  While such a theory may strike some as absurd, remember that orthodox science still has no clear explanation for the existence of Saturn's rings at all.  This fact alone argues that we should be open to alternative explanations, and carefully consider those that have been offered to explain the evidence that we find in the existence of Saturn's rings.