Stormy Weather

Photojournal: PIA06519

December 17, 2004











Stormy Weather

November 12, 2004



Full-Res: PIA06519





This Cassini view shows a bright storm that appeared in Saturn's southern hemisphere in mid-September and continued to evolve afterward. This type of storm is a good candidate source for lightning because of its sudden appearance and high level of activity. Lightning can be detected by Cassini's cameras when the spacecraft is on Saturn's night side, and by the radio and plasma wave detector on either the day or night side.


Several dark ovals to the left and right of this storm mark the sites of other storms in this turbulent westward-flowing region of the atmosphere.


The icy moon Enceladus (499 kilometers, or 310 miles, across) is visible near the bottom of the image.


This image was taken with the Cassini spacecraft narrow angle camera on Sept. 25, 2004, at a distance of 7.7 million kilometers (4.8 million miles) from Saturn through a filter sensitive to wavelengths of infrared light centered at 619 nanometers. The image scale is 45 kilometers (28 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 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 .


Image Credit:

NASA/JPL/Space Science Institute


ENLARGE