Saturn's C Ring approaching the planet at 100 km/year
Saturn's rings have to be carded at the door. Their age has long been seriously questioned. Back when the claim that the Earth was billions of years old became popular, of course, the knee-jerk, quickly standardized view was that the rings of Saturn were about four billion years old. Of course. Then came the age of powerful observatories, space telescopes, and NASA's fly-by missions. Enter data. Today, it is increasingly difficult to maintain the more recent claims that the rings are 50 to 100 million years old. For example, of Saturn's three most prominent rings, it's C ring was not visible until the mid-1800s and it's inner edge is expanding toward the planet's surface at a rate of about 100 kilometers per year. Hear this topic discussed also on Real Science Friday and check out this topic on Science News.