PIA08299: A Dead Giveaway

A Dead Giveaway


Edge waves in the Keeler Gap betray the presence of the embedded moon Daphnis.

Though the Cassini spacecraft cannot see Daphnis (7 kilometers, or 4.3 miles across) in this image (because the spacecraft is looking at its dark side), the tiny moon is undoubtedly located right of center, where the inner edge waves cease and the outer waves begin. The little moon was discovered in Cassini images that revealed its signature waves in the Keeler gap (42 kilometers, or 26 miles wide).

At left lies the brilliant F ring with its flanking strands. The bright F ring core is about 50 kilometers (30 miles) wide.

This view looks toward the unlit side of the rings from about 32 degrees above the ringplane.

The image was taken in visible light with the Cassini spacecraft narrow-angle camera on Sept. 29, 2006 at a distance of approximately 1.7 million kilometers (1 million miles) from Saturn and at a Sun-Saturn-spacecraft, or phase, angle of 157 degrees. Image scale is about 10 kilometers (6 miles) per pixel.

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 mission for NASA's Science Mission Directorate, Washington, D.C. The Cassini orbiter and its two onboard cameras were designed, developed and assembled at JPL. The imaging operations center is based at the Space Science Institute in Boulder, Colo.

For more information about the Cassini-Huygens mission visit http://saturn.jpl.nasa.gov/home/index.cfm . The Cassini imaging team homepage is at http://ciclops.org .

Cataloging Keywords:

Name Value Additional Values
Target Saturn Rings Daphnis, F Ring, Saturn
System Saturn
Target Type Ring Planet, Satellite
Mission Cassini-Huygens
Instrument Host Cassini Orbiter
Host Type Orbiter
Instrument Imaging Science Subsystem (ISS)
Detector Narrow Angle Camera
Extra Keywords Gap, Grayscale, Visual, Wave
Acquisition Date
Release Date 2006-10-31
Date in Caption
Image Credit NASA/JPL/Space Science Institute
Source photojournal.jpl.nasa.gov/catalog/PIA08299
Identifier PIA08299