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 Why in news

  • Astronomers believe Mimas, the smallest of the major moons of Saturn, known as the “big seven” or the “inner moons”.

  • It may have a liquid ocean around 20-30 km under its heavily cratered ice shell.

  • Nicknamed “Death Star” for the resemblance of its cratered surface to a space station in theStar Warsfranchise.

  • Mimas was an unlikely candidate to host an ocean because the presence of these water bodies is generally marked by modifications of the surface by internal dynamics.


  • In a study published in the Nature journal on February 7, 2024, scientists analysed Mimas’s orbital motion based on data from NASA’s Cassini spacecraft and determined that the moon’s librations — or oscillations — indicate it either has an elongated silicate core or a global ocean

What is Mimas?

  • Mimas is the smallest and innermost major moon of Saturn

  • It is also known as Saturn I

  • Discovered in 1789 by William Herschel, Mimas is a fascinating celestial body with a unique appearance.

  • Mimas is roughly 396 kilometers in diameter, making it significantly smaller than Earth's moon. 

  • Despite its small size, Mimas is nearly spherical due to its own gravity.

  • The surface of Mimas is heavily cratered, with the most prominent feature being the Herschel crater, a giant impact crater that spans nearly one-third of the moon's diameter.



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Learnerz IAS | Concept oriented UPSC Classes in Malayalam: Mimas UPSC NOTE
Learnerz IAS | Concept oriented UPSC Classes in Malayalam
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