What are Saturn’s rings like? Made up of countless individual ice particles Extremely thin with many gaps How do other ‣ ‣ ‣ jovian ring systems compare to Saturn’s? Much fainter ring systems with smaller, darker, less numerous particles Why do the ‣ ‣ jovian planets have rings? Ring particles are probably debris from moons ‣ What are asteroids like? Rocky leftovers from the era of planet formation Generally irregular in shape Some are “rubble ‣ ‣ ‣ piles” The majority are found in the asteroid belt, between the orbits of Mars and Jupiter What are comets like? Comets are ‣ ‣ ‣ like dirty snowballs Most are far from Sun and do not have tails Tails grow when comet nears Sun and the nucleus heats up ‣ ‣ ‣ Comets come from Kuiper Belt and Oort cloud What are meteoroids, meteors, & meteorites? Meteoroid - small debris in space Meteor - bright streak in the air cause by fall ‣ ‣ - ing debris Meteorite - space rock on the ground Most meteors are comet debris, but meteorites come from asteroid debris ‣ ‣ ‣ Did a meteorite impact kill the dinosaurs? An iridium-rich sediment layer and an impact crater on the Mexican coast show that a ‣ large impact occurred at the time the dinosaurs died out, 65 million years ago
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