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The Cassini spacecraft gazes toward the multiple strands of the ever-changing F ring, also sighting Atlas at its station just beyond the A ring edge.
A few faint background stars are visible in the image. Atlas, which appears left of center, is 32 kilometers (20 miles across).
This view looks toward the unlit side of the rings from about 58 degrees above the ringplane.
The image was taken in visible light with the Cassini spacecraft narrow-angle camera on Feb. 10, 2007 at a distance of approximately 1.7 million kilometers (1.1 million miles) from Atlas and at a Sun-Atlas-spacecraft, or phase, angle of 128 degrees. Image scale is 10 kilometers (6 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