CICLOPS: Cassini Imaging Central Laboratory for OPerationS
Peering at Phoebe

Peering at Phoebe
PIA 06072

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  Shown here is a mosaic of seven of the sharpest, highest resolution images taken of Phoebe during Cassini's close flyby of the moon. The image scales range from 27 to 13 meters (90 to 43 feet) per pixel. Smaller and smaller craters can be resolved as resolution increases from left to right. The number of blocks (or bumps on the surface) also increases to the right. Sunlight is coming from the right, so the bright-dark pattern is reversed between blocks and small craters.

Grooves or chains of pits are seen on the left portion of the mosaic, which may mark fractures or faults induced by large impact events. Many of the small craters have bright rays, similar to recent craters on the Moon. There are also bright streaks on steep slopes, perhaps where loose regolith slid downhill during the seismic shaking of impact events. There are also places where especially dark materials are present, perhaps rich in carbon compounds.

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 Office of Space Science, 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: June 14, 2004 (PIA 06072)
Image/Caption Information