May 5, 2006
This amazing perspective view captures battered Mimas against the hazy limb of Saturn.
It is obvious in such close-up images that Mimas (397 kilometers, or 247 miles across) has been badly scarred by impacts over the eons. Its 130 kilometer- (80 mile-) wide crater, Herschel, lies in the darkness at right.
North on Mimas is up and rotated 19 degrees to the right.
The image was taken with the Cassini spacecraft narrow-angle camera on March 21, 2006 using a filter sensitive to wavelengths of ultraviolet light centered at 338 nanometers. The image was acquired at a distance of approximately 191,000 kilometers (119,000 miles) from Mimas and at a Sun-Mimas-spacecraft, or phase, angle of 91 degrees. Image scale is 1 kilometer (3,730 feet) 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