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A target of intense interest to Cassini mission scientists is Enceladus, whose wrinkled and frozen crescent is seen here with Saturn’s rings. The planet’s dark shadow bisects the ringscape.
The illuminated terrain seen here is on the moon’s trailing hemisphere. North on Enceladus is up and rotated 20 degrees to the left. Enceladus is 505 kilometers (314 miles) across.
The image was taken in visible green light with the Cassini narrow-angle camera on Oct. 13, 2005 at a distance of approximately 1.2 million kilometers (700,000 miles) from Enceladus and at a Sun-Enceladus-spacecraft, or phase, angle of 106 degrees. The image scale is 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.
Image Credit: NASA/JPL/Space Science Institute