CICLOPS: Cassini Imaging Central Laboratory for OPerationS

Bright Basin on Tethys
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Bright Basin on Tethys
PIA 18329

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  With the expanded range of colors visible to Cassini's cameras, differences in materials and their textures become apparent that are subtle or unseen in natural color views. Here, the giant impact basin Odysseus on Saturn's moon Tethys stands out brightly from the rest of the illuminated icy crescent. This distinct coloration may result from differences in either the composition or structure of the terrain exposed by the giant impact. Odysseus (280 miles, or 450 kilometers, across) is one of the largest impact craters seen on Saturn’s icy moons, and may have significantly altered the geologic history of Tethys.

Tethys’ dark side (at right) is faintly illuminated by reflected light from Saturn.

Images taken using ultraviolet, green and infrared spectral filters were combined to create this color view. North on Tethys (660 miles or 1,062 kilometers across) is up in this view.

The view was acquired on May 9, 2015 at a distance of approximately 186,000 miles (300,000 kilometers) from Tethys. Image scale is 1 mile (1.75 kilometers) per pixel.

The Cassini Solstice 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 Solstice Mission visit, and

Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Space Science Institute/Lunar and Planetary Institute
Released: July 27, 2015 (PIA 18329)
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