January 12, 2010
The bright arc in Saturn's faint G ring contains a little something special.
Although it can't be seen here, the tiny moonlet Aegaeon (formerly known as S/2008 S 1) orbits within the bright arc. See Tiny Moonlet Within G Ring Arc to learn more. This view looks toward the northern, sunlit side of the rings from just above the ringplane. Many background stars are visible.
The image was taken in visible light with the Cassini spacecraft narrow-angle camera on Dec. 7, 2009. The view was obtained at a distance of approximately 1.7 million kilometers (1.1 million miles) from Saturn. Image scale is 10 kilometers (6 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