Planetary science

Slippery sliding on icy Iapetus

Enigmatically, some landslides flow farther than normal frictional resistance allows. Cassini images of Saturn's icy moon Iapetus reveal a multitude of long-runout landslides that may have been enabled by flash heating along the sliding surface.

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Figure 1: Images from the Cassini ISS probe reveal numerous landslides across the surface of Iapetus.

© NASA/JPL/SPACE SCIENCE INSTITUTE

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Correspondence to Antoine Lucas.

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Lucas, A. Slippery sliding on icy Iapetus. Nature Geosci 5, 524–525 (2012). https://doi.org/10.1038/ngeo1532

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