(WTAJ) — One of the most awe-inspiring sights in our solar system, Saturn, is about to lose its iconic look when its rings disappear in the year 2025.
As Saturn dances in the night sky, it tilts on an axis, much like Earth. It takes 29.4 Earth years to complete an orbit around the sun. It rotates quickly, making a day on Saturn only 10.7 Earth hours, according to NASA.
While it’s known to scientists that Saturn’s rings are slowly being pulled into the planet’s atmosphere, 2025 will be a bit different.
What’s happening to Saturn’s rings?
Saturn rotates on an axis, tilting it to make the rings easy to see. However, Saturn is transitioning and as its tilt changes, it will align the edge of its rings directly with Earth. Think of it as trying to see a piece of paper edge-on from the opposite endzone of a football field.
Fear not, though. Saturn will continue its celestial dance and by the year 2032, it’s predicted the transition will give us a marvelous look at the underside of its rings, according to space.com.
This event happens roughly every 30 years as Saturn completes its trip around the Sun.
While we won’t be able to see Saturn’s rings, this cosmic event should offer a great view of many of Saturn’s 146 moons.
Did you know? The very first moon discovered around Saturn happened nearly 400 years ago! NASA shows that the first moon, Titan, was discovered in 1655 by Christiaan Huygens, a Dutch mathematician and physicist.
Speaking of moons, scientists with NASA believe the mass of moons orbiting the planet is what causes the tilt of Saturn to alter and it will continue to happen over the next billion years.
For more facts about Saturn, you can check out NASA facts by clicking here.