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Cassini Captures First Ever Video Of Lightning On Another Planet

  1. Apr 18, 2010 #1
    Not sure if this has already been posted on the board, but here is another fascinating bit of information collected by the Cassini spacecraft as it floated near Saturn.

    Check the link below for pictures & the video!

    http://markitscience.blogspot.com/2010/04/cassini-captures-first-space-lightning.html" [Broken]
    Last edited by a moderator: May 4, 2017
  2. jcsd
  3. Apr 19, 2010 #2
    Thanks MarkitScience
  4. Apr 19, 2010 #3
    Find lightning occurring on a planet with evidence of water and things really get exciting :)
  5. Apr 19, 2010 #4

    MarkitScience, very exciting news! I've reviewed the website you have provided. I'm not 100% sure if the owner of the website should be using a video from Nasa without permission. And, I didn't notice a credit given as is on the NASA website."This Cassini movie -- the first of its kind -- shows lightning on Saturn's night side flashing in a cloud that is illuminated by light from Saturn's rings. Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/SSI/University of Iowa." There also wasn't a link to NASA, which I do think would be nice. http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/cassini/media/cassini20100414.html

    Also, the text on the website you provided isn't quite accurate. You might like to review the actual article here:

    Last edited by a moderator: May 4, 2017
  6. Apr 19, 2010 #5
    Could liquid methane, like on Titan, provide the same environment for a primordial soup like we believe started life on Earth? Or would lightning striking methane end horribly? :)
  7. Apr 19, 2010 #6
    interesting question. i'm pretty sure that lightning striking liquid methane wouldn't end horribly, if by horrible you mean a massive explosion.

    for combustion to occur you need 1) ignition, 2) fuel, and 3) an oxidant.
    liquid methane takes care of the fuel, the lightning bolt would provide the ignition, but without the presence of an oxidant, a fire or an oxidant wouldn't be possible.

    however, if you remember in 1994 when a comet hit Jupiter, it made enormous explosions, even though i think there aren't any oxidants on the planet. this was likely possible because the comet that struck the planet brought its own oxidants with it... but this limited amount of oxidants wasn't enough to cause the whole planet to be destroyed.

    check out this youtube video for a reminder of the 1994 incident
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 25, 2017
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