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Prometheus is seen near Saturn's tenuous F ring as the moon orbits in the Roche Division between the F and A rings.
The gravity of potato-shaped Prometheus (86 kilometers, 53 miles across) periodically creates streamer-channels in the F ring. See PIA10461 and PIA10593 to learn more. To watch a movie of this process, see PIA08397. A dark channel from an earlier encounter can be seen in the F ring at the top of the image.
This view looks toward the unilluminated side of the rings from about 51 degrees above the ringplane. The image was taken in visible light with the Cassini spacecraft narrow-angle camera on May 2, 2009. The view was acquired at a distance of approximately 1.5 million kilometers (932,000 miles) from Prometheus and at a Sun-Prometheus-spacecraft, or phase, angle of 108 degrees. Image scale is 9 kilometers (5 miles) per pixel.
The Cassini Equinox 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.