CICLOPS: Cassini Imaging Central Laboratory for OPerationS
Iceball Among Snowballs

Enceladus (504 kilometers, 313 miles across) seems to hover above the outer reaches of Saturn's B ring. Below and to the right of Enceladus, four faint bands lie in the center of the dark Cassini Division.

Recently, scientists have speculated that the particles that make up the dense B and A rings might be more like fluffy snowballs than hard ice cubes. The conclusion is based on temperature data obtained by Cassini.

Enceladus is on the near side of the rings in this view.

The image was taken in visible light with the narrow angle camera on September 15, 2005, from a distance of approximately 2.3 million kilometers (1.4 million miles) from Enceladus. The image scale is 14 kilometers (9 miles) per pixel on Enceladus.

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: October 31, 2005 (PIA 07619)
Image/Caption Information
  Iceball Among Snowballs
PIA 07619

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