Spokes Before Night
August 9, 2010
Bright spokes can be seen on Saturn's B ring just in front of the shadow cast on the rings on the night side of the planet in this Cassini spacecraft image.
The spokes are on the left of the image. See Bright Spokes, Dark Shadow to learn more. Saturn's moon Tethys (1,062 kilometers, or 660 miles across) can be seen in the upper right of the image. The moon Enceladus (504 kilometers, or 313 miles across) is visible in the lower right. Both moons are overexposed.
This view looks toward the northern, sunlit side of the rings from about 8 degrees above the ringplane.
The image was taken in visible green light with the Cassini spacecraft wide-angle camera on May 30, 2010. The view was obtained at a distance of approximately 1.9 million kilometers (1.2 million miles) from Saturn and at a sun-Saturn-spacecraft, or phase, angle of 104 degrees. Image scale is 110 kilometers (68 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.
Credit: NASA/JPL/Space Science Institute