Have I Been Drawing Enceladus Wrong?

Enceladus, one of Saturn’s moons, is becoming increasingly famous as one of those places in the Solar System where we’re most likely to find alien life. It certainly has the water for it. On this blog, I traditionally depict Enceladus like this:

It’s a nice, icy-looking world with a cheerful personality and active geysers in its south polar region. But have I been drawing Enceladus wrong this whole time? Would it make more sense to draw it like this?

Maybe. According to this article from Saturn Daily, Enceladus may have tipped sideways (by about 55°) at some point in its history. Apparently surface features reveal evidence of an old equator and old north and south poles.

The story is that one day, Enceladus was orbiting along, minding its own business, when it got whacked hard by an asteroid. Saturn Daily tells us that following the impact, Enceladus would have spent about a million years wobbling back and forth until it could reorient its rotation.

But Enceladus did manage to reorient itself. It has a new axis of rotation, a new north and south pole, and a new equator. It’s not a sideways moon, at least not anymore, which means by the logic of space cartoons, I’ve been drawing Enceladus correctly.

At least I think I have. What do you think? Does it make sense to draw Enceladus based on its current orientation or its (possible) original orientation?

8 Responses to Have I Been Drawing Enceladus Wrong?

  1. Simon says:

    Hmmm… Yoy could play with this!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Draw him on his (her?, its?) side. That way we’ll be reminded of this feature about it.

    There’s a site devoted to daily coverage of Saturn? Following the link, it looks like it’s a subset of an overall space news site. Pretty cool. Is spacedaily a superset of all the others?

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Scott Levine says:

    Hah… you could have lots of fun with this. You know, there’s no up and down in space, so maybe there’s no wrong answer here. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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