CICLOPS: Cassini Imaging Central Laboratory for OPerationS

Act of Creation
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Act of Creation
PIA 08849

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  Prometheus dips into the inner F ring at its farthest point from Saturn in its orbit, creating a dark gore and a corresponding bright streamer. Gores created during previous apoapsis (the name for the farthest point in an orbit) passes, are seen above. The older gores are farther behind the moon in its orbit of Saturn.

This view looks toward the unlit side of the rings from about 31 degrees above the ringplane. Prometheus is 86 kilometers (53 miles) across.

The image was taken in visible light with the Cassini spacecraft narrow-angle camera on Nov. 1, 2006 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 162 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 Institute
Released: January 8, 2007 (PIA 08849)
Image/Caption Information

Alliance Member Comments
Ed Rolko (Jan 18, 2007 at 11:05 AM):
Thanks a bunch for the info Chris, it's good to learn even the small stuff! That was a good question Sfair, Thank You too, ......... Ed
chris (Jan 16, 2007 at 12:19 PM):
The Planetary Image Archive (PIA) numbers are blocks of arbitrary numbers assigned to different teams on different spacecraft. They act as unique identifiers for publicly released products such as the images on this site. The numbers themselves have no particular meaning and aren't always assigned sequentially.
sfair (Jan 15, 2007 at 8:51 AM):
Thanks Ed. I found that PIA is and acronym for Planetary Image Archive, but I didnt found exactly what the numbers mean. So is it just a sequence number of image release?

Ed Rolko (Jan 15, 2007 at 7:00 AM):
sfair - The identifier that accompanies the daily image appears to be a designator followed by a sequence number, possibly to denote that the image is meant for release to the general public, and not intended for scientific study. Cheers, ....Ed
sfair (Jan 14, 2007 at 10:29 PM):
Prometheus' effects are really amazing. But I have a question:
What does mean PIA and the number that follows it?

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