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At their closest on the 21th of December (in the UK), they will be very close, only about 6 arc minutes. That is in the field of view of most telescopes (about 1/5 of the diameter of the moon. It will look like this (simulated)


How is it possible that Saturn's gravitational acceleration felt by Mimas is stronger than Mimas' own surface gravity? That's just the way it is. An apple hanging from a tree is more strongly attracted to the Earth than to the tree. A worm crawling on it is more attracted to the Earth than the apple. Yet they retain some forces keeping them from falling ...


Since Mimas is in orbit around Saturn, it is in freefall; just as an astronaut in a space station appears to not experience the Earth's gravity because that gravity is acting equally on the space station and the astronaut, the outside of Mimas will appear to not experience Saturn's gravity, as the center is also experience Saturn's gravity and thus they are ...


An object on Mimas' surface would be much more attracted to Saturn than it is to Mimas. You are missing that Mimas as a whole accelerates gravitationally toward Saturn. What this means is that a point on the surface of the Mimas will feel the acceleration at that point toward Saturn minus the acceleration of Mimas as a whole toward Saturn. This is the tidal ...

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