CICLOPS: Cassini Imaging Central Laboratory for OPerationS
Above the Storms

Great circular vortices churn through Saturn's northern skies.

The planet wears the shadow of its rings as a dark belt. Just above that belt is the shadow of 179-kilometer (111-mile) wide Janus.

This view was acquired from 38 degrees above the Saturn's equator.

The image was taken with the Cassini spacecraft wide-angle camera on Jan. 13, 2008 using a spectral filter sensitive to wavelengths of infrared light centered at 752 nanometers. The view was obtained at a distance of approximately 1.2 million kilometers (746,000 miles) from Saturn. Image scale is 68 kilometers (42 miles) per pixel.

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: February 14, 2008 (PIA 09837)
Image/Caption Information
  Above the Storms
PIA 09837

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Alliance Member Comments
Mercury_3488 (Feb 14, 2008 at 1:58 PM):
Absolutely stunning image.

Note how the ring shadows are continuing to narrow & how far north we can see now, as the Spring Equinox is approx 22 months away now.

The storms in the far north look pretty large. Any ideas of wind speeds & temperatures, whether or not they are Sun induced (probably not). It is most fascinating to be able to observe Saturn with Cassini during an equinox.
Tommy (Feb 14, 2008 at 8:00 AM):
Beautiful, and remarkably similar to a Voyager shot