CICLOPS: Cassini Imaging Central Laboratory for OPerationS

Behold B Ring Clumps
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Cassini looks closely at the outer B ring and the Cassini Division, revealing clump-like structures in the outer edge of the B ring.

The scrambled pattern in the B ring's outer edge -- seen here in the lower left corner of the image -- is the result of the gravitational clumping of particles there. To learn more about these patterns, see PIA09855. The Cassini Division occupies most of the rest of the image. The A ring can be see in the upper right.

This view looks toward the sunlit side of the rings from about 31 degrees below the ringplane.

The image was taken in visible light with the Cassini spacecraft narrow-angle camera on July 10, 2009. The view was acquired at a distance of approximately 320,000 kilometers (199,000 miles) from Saturn and at a Sun-Saturn-spacecraft, or phase, angle of 69 degrees. Image scale is 2 kilometers (5,141 feet) 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.

For more information about the Cassini Equinox Mission visit, and

Credit: NASA/JPL/Space Science Institute
Released: August 31, 2009 (PIA 11569)
Image/Caption Information
  Behold B Ring Clumps
PIA 11569

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