This unusual view of Hyperion (270 kilometers, 168 miles across) shows just how strangely-shaped this tumbling little moon is. Hyperion is the largest of Saturn's irregularly shaped moons.
The image was taken in visible light with the narrow angle camera on December 10, 2004, from a distance of 3.5 million kilometers (2.2 million miles) from Hyperion and at a Sun-Hyperion-spacecraft, or phase, angle of 68 degrees. The image scale is about 21 kilometers (13 miles) per pixel. The image has been magnified by a factor of two and contrast enhanced to aid visibility.
[Caption updated February 12, 2008]
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.