January 6, 2009
The ghostly features in Saturn's B ring called spokes are making an appearance again as the Cassini spacecraft continues its tour of the Saturn system.
These dusty features on the rings are often wedge-shaped, as this one is, with the inner portions of the spoke being wider than the outer portions due to electromagnetic effects on the dust particles.
The image was taken in visible light with the Cassini spacecraft wide-angle camera on Nov. 26, 2008 at a distance of approximately 922,000 kilometers (573,000 miles) from Saturn and at a Sun-Saturn-spacecraft, or phase, angle of 39 degrees. Image scale is 52 kilometers (32 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 operations center is based at the Space Science Institute in Boulder, Colo.
Credit: NASA/JPL/Space Science Institute