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The highly reflective moon Enceladus appears as a bright dot beyond a crescent Saturn in this Cassini image.
Enceladus (504 kilometers, 313 miles across) is visible above the ringplane to the left of the center of the image, and the moon is farther away from Cassini than the planet is. This view looks toward the northern, sunlit side of the rings from just above the ringplane.
The image was taken with the Cassini spacecraft wide-angle camera on Oct. 23, 2009 using a spectral filter sensitive to wavelengths of near-infrared light centered at 728 nanometers. The view was obtained at a distance of approximately 2.8 million kilometers (1.7 million miles) from Enceladus and 2.6 million kilometers (1.6 million miles) from Saturn. Image scale is 149 kilometers (92 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.