CICLOPS: Cassini Imaging Central Laboratory for OPerationS

Pan Speeds into Darkness
[For trouble viewing the images/movies on this page, go here]
Cassini looks down at the unlit side of the rings as Pan heads into Saturn's shadow. The moon is accompanied by faint ringlets in the Encke Gap.

At bottom, the bright F ring core fades slowly into darkness.

This view looks toward the unlit side of the rings from about 20 degrees above the ringplane.

The image was taken in visible light with the Cassini spacecraft wide-angle camera on Nov. 15, 2006. Cassini was then at a distance of approximately 1.7 million kilometers (1.1 million miles) from Saturn and at a Sun-Saturn-spacecraft, or phase, angle of 163 degrees. 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 Cassini-Huygens mission for NASA's Science Mission Directorate, Washington, D.C. 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-Huygens mission, visit and the Cassini imaging team home page,

Credit: NASA/JPL/Space Science InstituteNASA/JPL/Space Science Institute
Released: December 19, 2006 (PIA 08826)
Image/Caption Information
  Pan Speeds into Darkness
PIA 08826

Avg Rating: 7.50/10

Full Size 1008x1008:
PNG 441 KB

Want to add a comment?   Login (for Alliance Members) ... or ... Join the CICLOPS Alliance!