PIA08983: Puzzling Spokes

 Puzzling Spokes

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The Cassini spacecraft spies multiple spokes in Saturn’s outer B ring. The precise origin and evolution of these transient features continue to provide ring scientists with intriguing puzzles to solve.

Most of these spokes are about 4,000 kilometers (2,500 miles) long; the two near the bottom of the scene are about 1,000 kilometers (600 miles) wide.

This view looks toward the unilluminated side of the rings from about 8 degrees above the ringplane.

The image was taken in visible green light with the Cassini spacecraft narrow-angle camera on June 2, 2007. The view was acquired at a distance of approximately 2.2 million kilometers (1.4 million miles) from Saturn. Image scale is 13 kilometers (8 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.

Image Credit: NASA/JPL/Space Science Institute

Source: NASA’s Planetary Photojournal: Image No. PIA08983