CICLOPS: Cassini Imaging Central Laboratory for OPerationS
Glow of Night

Soft light from Saturn lifts the veil of night from the moons Dione and Rhea.

A scant crescent on each satellite marks the limit of the Sun's direct reach; the remaining light is reflected onto the moons by the Ringed Planet.

This view was acquired using an image compression scheme that results in minor artifacts being present--on Rhea particular. Rhea (1,528 kilometers, 949 miles across, and pictured above) is somewhat bland in appearance at this image scale, although Dione's (1,123 kilometers, 698 miles across) spectacular fractures stand out marvelously.

North on both moons is rotated 45 degrees to the right.

The image was taken in visible light with the Cassini spacecraft narrow-angle camera on Aug. 11, 2006 at a distance of approximately 2.6 million kilometers (1.6 million miles) from Dione and 2.8 million kilometers (1.7 million miles) from Rhea. Image scale is 15 kilometers (10 miles) per pixel on Dione and 17 kilometers (11 miles) on Rhea.

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.

For more information about the Cassini-Huygens mission, visit and the Cassini imaging team home page,

Credit: NASA/JPL/Space Science Institute
Released: September 7, 2006 (PIA 08261)
Image/Caption Information
  Glow of Night
PIA 08261

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