PIA06497: Rounding the Rings

Rounding the Rings


Cassini spied two members of Saturn's family rounding the rings in this image from Aug. 20, 2004.

The moons visible in this image are Mimas (398 kilometers, or 247 miles across) near upper right, and Epimetheus (116 kilometers, or 72 miles across) near the center, outside the faint F ring.

Three major gaps in Saturn's rings can be seen here as well. The Cassini division (4,800 kilometer or 2,980 miles wide) is the dark swath at lower right. The Encke Gap (325 kilometers or 202 miles wide) and narrow Keeler Gap (35 kilometers or 22 miles wide) are visible as dark arcs near the edge of the A ring. Small clumps of material are visible in the narrow F ring, beyond the edge of the main rings.

The image was taken in visible light with the Cassini spacecraft narrow angle camera at a distance of 9 million kilometers (5.6 million miles) from Saturn. The image scale is 54 kilometers (34 miles) per pixel. Atlas has been brightened to improve visibility.

Background Info:

The Cassini-Huygens mission is a cooperative project of NASA, the European Space Agency and the Italian Space Agency. The Jet Propulsion Laboratory, a division of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, manages the Cassini-Huygens mission for NASA's Office of Space Science, Washington, D.C. The Cassini orbiter and its two onboard cameras, were designed, developed and assembled at JPL. The imaging team is based at the Space Science Institute, Boulder, Colo.

For more information, about the Cassini-Huygens mission visit, http://saturn.jpl.nasa.gov and the Cassini imaging team home page, http://ciclops.org .

Cataloging Keywords:

Name Value Additional Values
Target Saturn A Ring, Atlas, Cassini Division, Encke Gap, Epimetheus, F Ring, Mimas, Saturn Rings
System Saturn
Target Type Planet Gap, Ring, Satellite
Mission Cassini-Huygens
Instrument Host Cassini Orbiter
Host Type Orbiter
Instrument Imaging Science Subsystem (ISS)
Detector Narrow Angle Camera
Extra Keywords Clump, Grayscale
Acquisition Date
Release Date 2004-10-13
Date in Caption 2004-08-20
Image Credit NASA/JPL/Space Science Institute
Source photojournal.jpl.nasa.gov/catalog/PIA06497
Identifier PIA06497