Illustration for article titled Weve Been Wrong About Saturns Exact Location For Centuries

Looking at a map of our solar system, you might have felt comfortable saying that we know (and have known for sometime) exactly where Saturn is. But a brand new ultra-precise measure that tracks the location of the planet to its exact pinpoint in space shows that we've been off, by perhaps up to 100 miles.


Our earlier measurements of Saturn's location came from observations from ground-based telescopes. Using data from the Cassini mission in combination with the Very Long Baseline Array radio telescopes, however, NASA was recently able to give us an incredibly accurate reading of both Saturn of all its moons to within two miles of their locations in space. That beats previous measurements by up to 50 times.

Now that we have this incredibly accurate data, what can we do it? The answer is plenty. We can make better observations, more accurate predictions, most exciting of all though is NASA's suggestion that it can be used for better navigation for future interplanetary spacecraft. For any future space travelers out there, those saved miles could make all the difference.


Image: One of many incredible Saturn images from Cassini / NASA/JPL/Space Science Institute.

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