!Screenshot from the animation ‘Unidentified F Ring Objects’

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Unidentified F Ring Objects

A solitary clump-like feature in Saturn’s F ring orbits past in this movie sequence made from Cassini images. This feature is seen magnified at the bottom right in PIA07716.

Scientists are trying to determine whether these features are solid moonlets that help control the ring or just loose clumps of particles within the ring.

The images in this sequence were acquired in visible light using the Cassini spacecraft narrow-angle camera on April 13, 2005, at a distance of approximately 1.2 million kilometers (700,000 miles) from Saturn. Image scale is about 7 kilometers (4 miles) per pixel.

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 saturn.jpl.nasa.gov. The Cassini imaging team homepage is at ciclops.org.

Credit: NASA/JPL/Space Science Institute