Polar Heat on Saturn

On the Earth and other bodies with poles, the polar regions are their coldest locations. While 91 Kelvin (-296 degrees Fahrenheit) may be colder than most people can imagine, Saturn’s south pole turns out to be the hottest spot on the planet. In a surprising discovery by the W.M. Keck I Observatory at Mauna Kea, Hawaii, temperature emissions were found to abruptly change at various latitudes on Saturn. Why the pole should be warmer than lower latitudes is not understood. Saturn has now become the only known body in our solar system with this characteristic.

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Richard Leis

Richard Leis is a writer and poet living in Tucson, Arizona. His poetry has been published in Impossible Archetype and is forthcoming from The Laurel Review. A piece of flash fiction is forthcoming from Cold Creek Review. His essays about fairy tales and technology have been published online at Tiny Donkey and Fairy Tale Review’s “Fairy-Tale Files.” Richard is also Downlink Lead for HiRISE at the University of Arizona.