Space Image: Beside a giant

Feb 29, 2012
Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Space Science Institute

(PhysOrg.com) -- Saturn's largest moon, Titan, looks small here, pictured to the right of the gas giant in this Cassini spacecraft view.

Titan (3,200 miles, or 5,150 kilometers across) is in the upper right. Saturn's rings appear across the top of the image, and they cast a series of shadows onto the planet across the middle of the image.

The moon Prometheus (53 miles, or 86 kilometers across) appears as a tiny white speck above the rings in the far upper right of the image. The shadow cast by Prometheus can be seen as a small black speck on the planet on the far left of the image, between the shadows cast by the main rings and the thin F ring. The shadow of the moon Pandora also can be seen on the planet south of the shadows of all the rings, below the center of the image towards the right side of the planet. Pandora is not shown here.

This view looks toward the southern, unilluminated side of the rings from about 1 degree below the ringplane.

The image was taken with the wide-angle camera on Jan. 5, 2012 using a spectral filter sensitive to wavelengths of near-infrared light centered at 752 nanometers. The view was acquired at a distance of approximately 426,000 miles (685,000 kilometers) from Saturn and at a Sun-Saturn-spacecraft, or phase, angle of 20 degrees. Image scale is 23 miles (37 kilometers) per pixel on Saturn. The Cassini-Huygens mission is a cooperative project of NASA, the and the Italian Space Agency. The Jet Propulsion Laboratory, a division of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, manages the mission for NASA's Science Mission Directorate, Washington, D.C. The and its two onboard cameras were designed, developed and assembled at JPL. The imaging operations center is based at the in Boulder, Colo.

Explore further: With NASA's help, AeroAstro students work in a space-like environment

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Space Image: Welcome disruption

Jan 16, 2012

(PhysOrg.com) -- The line of Saturn's rings disrupts the Cassini spacecraft's view of the moons Tethys and Titan.

Image: Rings around a crescent

Nov 23, 2010

A crescent Saturn appears nestled within encircling rings in this Cassini spacecraft image. Clouds swirl through the atmosphere of the planet and a barely visible Prometheus orbits between the planet's main ...

Cassini presents Saturn moon quintet

Sep 19, 2011

(PhysOrg.com) -- With the artistry of a magazine cover shoot, NASA's Cassini spacecraft captured this portrait of five of Saturn's moons poised along the planet's rings.

Strings of Shadowy Rings Drape Saturn

Sep 17, 2004

Saturn's ring shadows appear wrapped in a harmonious symphony with the planet in this color view from the Cassini spacecraft. Saturn and its rings would nearly fill the space between Earth and the Moon. Ye ...

Space image: Dione flyby

Jan 24, 2012

Saturn's moon Mimas peeks out from behind the night side of the larger moon Dione in this Cassini image captured during the spacecraft's Dec. 12, 2011, flyby of Dione.

Image: Closest Dione flyby

Jan 23, 2012

(PhysOrg.com) -- Flying past Saturn's moon Dione, Cassini captured this view which includes two smaller moons, Epimetheus and Prometheus, near the planet's rings.

Recommended for you

Europe sat-nav launch glitch linked to frozen pipe

18 hours ago

A frozen fuel pipe in the upper stage of a Soyuz launcher likely caused the failure last month to place two European navigation satellites in orbit, a source close to the inquiry said Wednesday.

Cyanide ice in Titan's atmosphere

19 hours ago

Gigantic polar clouds of hydrogen cyanide roughly four times the area of the UK are part of the impressive atmospheric diversity of Titan, the largest moon of Saturn, a new study led by Leiden Observatory, ...

Video: Alleged meteor caught on Russian dash cam (again)

23 hours ago

Thanks to the ubiquity of dashboard-mounted video cameras in Russia yet another bright object has been spotted lighting up the sky over Siberia, this time a "meteor-like object" seen on the evening of Saturday, Sept. 27.

User comments : 0