This Cassini spacecraft narrow angle camera view of Saturn's southern polar region shows interesting details in the swirling boundaries between cloud bands. Two faint spots are visible at right, north and south of the boundary of the dark polar collar. The dark spot at the bottom of the image marks the planet's south pole.
The image was taken on July 19, 2004, at a distance of 6.2 million kilometers (3.9 million miles) from Saturn, through a filter which lets infrared light pass through. The image scale is 36 kilometers (22 miles) per pixel. Contrast was slightly enhanced to bring out features in the atmosphere.
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 Cassini-Huygens 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 team is based at the Space Science Institute, Boulder, Colo.
For more information about the Cassini-Huygens mission, visit http://saturn.jpl.nasa.gov and the Cassini imaging team home page, http://ciclops.org .
NASA/JPL/Space Science Institute