CICLOPS: Cassini Imaging Central Laboratory for OPerationS

Enceladus in the Distance
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Enceladus in the Distance
PIA 06512

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  Cassini spied the moon Enceladus in the distance beyond Saturn's south pole in this image from September 19, 2004.

This view was taken in wavelengths of ultraviolet light where gas molecules in Saturn's high atmosphere scatter a great deal of sunlight. Since Enceladus (504 kilometers, 313 miles across) has an unusually high reflectivity, its surface reflects even more of the light falling on it than Saturn does, making the moon appear very bright compared to the planet. Enceladus was dimmed in brightness by a factor of three during processing of the image, in order to make its brightness comparable to that of Saturn.

The image was taken with the narrow angle camera from a distance of 8.3 million kilometers (5.2 million miles) from Saturn. The image scale is 49 kilometers (30 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: November 3, 2004 (PIA 06512)
Image/Caption Information

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