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Atlas, seen here, is one of the two moons that ply the Roche Division—the region between Saturn’s A and F rings. Prometheus also orbits within this division.
This view looks toward flying-saucer-shaped Atlas (32 kilometers, or 20 miles across at its widest point) and the unilluminated side of the rings from about 37 degrees above the ringplane.
The image was taken in visible light with the Cassini spacecraft narrow-angle camera on March 9, 2008. The view was obtained at a distance of approximately 1.5 million kilometers (925,000 miles) from Atlas and at a Sun-Atlas-spacecraft, or phase, angle of 44 degrees. Image scale is 9 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