Looking Back at Saturn’s Rings

Looking Back at Saturn's Rings

Full-Res GIF (184 kB)


This image, in enhanced color, was taken by Voyager 1 looking back at Saturn after the encounter, from about 1.5 million km. At this high phase angle, the dusty F Ring comes into view; it is the very narrow and somewhat clumpy ringlet just outside the main rings. A diffuse, spoke is seen crossing the brightest part of the B Ring; in this lighting geometry the spokes Ring appear bright rather than dark, suggesting that they are made of fine dust. The innermost C Ring is darker than the others due both to darker particles and fewer of them; its characteristic banded appearance is quite different from the A and B Rings, but similar to the structure in the Cassini Division (the dark area between the A and B Rings. The C Ring’s brightness increases toward the left due to increased illumination from Saturn’s lit face.