CICLOPS: Cassini Imaging Central Laboratory for OPerationS
Rhea in Saturnshine

The night side of Rhea shines softly in reflected light from Saturn. A similar effect, called Earthshine, can often be seen dimly illuminating the dark side Earth's moon.

Background stars make short, dim trails across the black sky. The sunlit terrain on Rhea is so much brighter than the part lit by Saturn that the former is completely overexposed in this view, which took more than 30 seconds to acquire.

This view looks toward the leading hemisphere on Rhea (1,528 kilometers, 949 miles across). North is up and rotated 28 degrees to the left.

The image was taken in visible light with the Cassini spacecraft narrow-angle camera on June 11, 2007. The view was obtained at a distance of approximately 364,000 kilometers (226,000 miles) from Rhea and at a Sun-Rhea-spacecraft, or phase, angle of 154 degrees. Image scale is 4 kilometers (3 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: July 18, 2007 (PIA 08986)
Image/Caption Information
  Rhea in Saturnshine
PIA 08986

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