PIA09899: The Shepherd and Saturn

 The Shepherd and Saturn

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Caption:

Saturn’s brilliant limb shines through the semi-transparent A ring, while the outer F ring shepherd moon hangs against the black sky.

F-ring shepherding moon Pandora (81 kilometers, or 50 miles across), along with the inner shepherd moon Prometheus (see PIA09887), helps to keep the narrow lanes of the F ring in check.

This view looks toward the unilluminated side of the rings from about 15 degrees above the ringplane. The image was taken in visible light with the Cassini spacecraft narrow-angle camera on April 5, 2008. The view was obtained at a distance of approximately 1.3 million kilometers (814,000 miles) from Pandora. Image scale is 8 kilometers (5 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. PIA09899