Enceladus is a world divided. To the north, we see copious amounts of craters and evidence of the many impacts the moon has suffered in its history. However, to the south we see a smoother body with wrinkles due to geologic activity.
Most solar system bodies lacking an atmosphere are heavily cratered like Enceladus' (313 miles or 504 kilometers across) northern region. However, the geologic activity in the south, including the famous plume above the moon's south pole, can erase craters and leave a younger, smoother-looking surface.
This view looks toward the anti-Saturn hemisphere of Enceladus. North on Enceladus is up and rotated 4 degrees to the right. The image was taken in visible light with the Cassini spacecraft narrow-angle camera on Nov. 27, 2016.
The view was obtained at a distance of approximately 41,000 miles (66,000 kilometers) from Enceladus. Image scale is 1,310 feet (398 meters) per pixel.
The Cassini mission is a cooperative project of NASA, ESA (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. 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, Colorado.
|Instrument Host||Cassini Orbiter|
|Instrument||Imaging Science Subsystem (ISS)|
|Detector||Narrow Angle Camera|
|Extra Keywords||Atmosphere, Crater, Grayscale, Impact, Plume, Rotation, Visual|
|Date in Caption||2016-11-27|
|Image Credit||NASA/JPL-Caltech/Space Science Institute|