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White Spot on Saturn

Nature volume 68, page 229 (09 July 1903) | Download Citation



ON July 1, after observing Jupiter for some time, I directed my 10-inch reflector to Saturn, and found the details sharply defined. The dusky north polar cap was very distinct, and so was the dark belt on the north side of the equator. The belt was darkest and more strongly outlined on its southern side, probably by contrast with the bright equatorial zone. I soon noticed a large bright spot on the north side of the belt, and in a position nearing the western limb of the planet. It was followed by a diffused dusky marking. The luminous spot must have been on the planet's central meridian at about 14h. im., but this is only a rough estimate, as the marking was far past transit when I first saw it. It is to be hoped that this feature will prove fairly durable, in which case it may be expected to furnish an excellent means of redetermining the rotation period of Saturn.

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