Phoebe Looms in View

December 17, 2004

Phoebe Looms in View

June 11, 2004

Animation (2.5 MB QuickTime)

Phoebe, Saturn's largest outer moon, is the first target of exploration for the Saturn-bound Cassini spacecraft. This composite shows a set of four images taken from June 7 through June 10, 2004, by the spacecraft as it approached Phoebe. This eccentric moon has a diameter of 220 kilometers (about 136.7 miles) and orbits Saturn in the opposite direction of its larger interior moons. Previous ground-based observations have shown water ice present on its surface. In 1981, Voyager 2 captured images of Phoebe from about 2.2 million kilometers (about 1.4 million miles) away. Cassini will obtain images from a mere 2,000 kilometers (about 1,240 miles) above the moon's surface. The closest approach to Phoebe will be at 1:56 p.m. Pacific Time on June 11, just 19 days before Saturn arrival.

For more information about the Cassini-Huygens mission visit, and the Cassini imaging team home page, .

Image Credit: