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Janus coasts past as the Cassini spacecraft takes in a view of the unilluminated side of the rings. Bright regions within the rings appear so because they allow scattered sunlight to filter through.
This view looks toward the rings from about 3 degrees above the ringplane. The dark, relatively dense B ring lies at center, flanked by the much brighter C and A rings. The thin line of the F ring encompasses the rest. Janus at bottom right is 181 kilometers (113 miles) across.
The image was taken in visible light with the Cassini spacecraft wide-angle camera on Oct. 1, 2007. The view was obtained at a distance of approximately 581,000 kilometers (361,000 miles) from Saturn and at a Sun-ring-spacecraft, or phase, angle of 52 degrees at the center of this view. Image scale is 28 kilometers (17 miles) per pixel on Janus.
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