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Mimas is caught in the spotlight beneath Saturn’s rings in this amazing view from Cassini. Notable is the brightened outermost edge of the A ring beyond the narrow Keeler gap and the periodic brightening of the thin, knotted F ring. Mimas is 398 kilometers (247 miles) across.
The image was taken in visible light with the Cassini spacecraft narrow angle camera on Dec. 18, 2004, at a distance of 2 million kilometers (1.3 million miles) from Mimas and at a Sun-Mimas-spacecraft, or phase, angle of 105 degrees. The image scale is about 12 kilometers (7.5 miles) per pixel. The image has been magnified by a factor of two and contrast enhanced to aid visibility.
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 team is based at the Space Science Institute, Boulder, Colo.
Image Credit: NASA/JPL/Space Science Institute