Whirling storms on Saturn

Photojournal: PIA06598

March 4, 2005

Several whirling storms churn through this scene from Saturn's atmosphere, obtained by the Cassini spacecraft.

It is common on Saturn to see bright rings around dark atmospheric vortices, as in this view. The large vortex at the upper right appears to have material flowing either into or out of it.

The image was taken with the Cassini spacecraft narrow-angle camera on Feb. 5, 2005, at a distance of approximately 3.4 million kilometers (2.1 million miles) from Saturn through a filter sensitive to wavelengths of infrared light centered at 750 nanometers. The image scale is 20 kilometers (12 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 team is based at the Space Science Institute, Boulder, Colo.

For more information about the Cassini-Huygens mission visit http://saturn.jpl.nasa.gov . For additional images visit the Cassini imaging team homepage http://ciclops.org .

Credit: NASA/JPL/Space Science Institute.

ENLARGE