CICLOPS: Cassini Imaging Central Laboratory for OPerationS
Pensive Saturn

This brooding portrait shows the southwest limb of the cold gas giant and the filamentary cloud features lurking there. The limb appears smooth, but at the terminator and at higher resolution, variations in cloud height can cause shadows that are visible to Cassini (see PIA06596)

The image was taken in visible red light with the Cassini spacecraft wide-angle camera on Oct. 30, 2005 at a distance of approximately 401,000 kilometers (249,000 miles) from Saturn and at a Sun-Saturn-spacecraft, or phase, angle of 155 degrees. Image scale is 20 kilometers (13 miles) per pixel. The image was contrast enhanced to improve visibility of features in the atmosphere.

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: December 6, 2005 (PIA 07646)
Image/Caption Information
  Pensive Saturn
PIA 07646

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