CICLOPS: Cassini Imaging Central Laboratory for OPerationS

Heading for the South Pole
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Heading for the South Pole
PIA 17203

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  The south polar region of Saturn's active, icy moon Enceladus awaits NASA's Cassini spacecraft in this view, acquired on approach to the mission's deepest-ever dive through the moon's plume of icy spray. The wavy boundary of the moon's south polar region is visible at bottom, where it disappears into wintry darkness.

This view was captured shortly after PIA17202.

This view looks towards the Saturn-facing side of Enceladus. North on Enceladus is up and rotated 22 degrees to the right. The image was taken in visible green light with the Cassini spacecraft narrow-angle camera on Oct. 28, 2015.

The view was acquired at a distance of approximately 38,000 miles (61,000 kilometers) from Enceladus and at a Sun-Enceladus-spacecraft, or phase, angle of 42 degrees. Image scale is 1,198 feet (365 meters) per pixel.

The Cassini Solstice Mission is a joint United States and European endeavor. 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 was designed, developed and assembled at JPL. The imaging team consists of scientists from the US, England, France, and Germany. The imaging operations center and team lead (Dr. C. Porco) are based at the Space Science Institute in Boulder, Colo.

For more information about the Cassini Solstice Mission visit, and

Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/SSI
Released: October 30, 2015 (PIA 17203)
Image/Caption Information