Friday, October 21, 2005

Dione's Ringside Seat - / NASA

Dione's Ringside Seat

Saturn's moon Dione appears to hover over its parent planet’s rings in this color view caught by the Cassini probe during a flyby this month.
Cassini swung within 24,200 miles (39,000 kilometers) to capture this view of Dione, Saturn and the rings during its Oct. 11 flyby. The spacecraft used blue, green and infrared filters to build this image, which shows how the scene would look to a human observer.
Saturn’s rings appear beneath the icy moon of Dione as horizontal stripes, though their shadows – the black curves of the C and B rings – can be seen sweeping across the gas giant in the background at the upper right.
The colorful blues and golds of Saturn and its rings are offset by Dione’s starkness. The satellite appears no different in this color view than in monochrome images, astronomers said.
Each pixel of this image corresponds to about one mile (2 kilometers) in this image, which was photographed while Cassini was nearly in the same plane as Saturn’s rings.
-- Staff


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