CICLOPS: Cassini Imaging Central Laboratory for OPerationS
Moons and Gaps

Moons and Gaps
PIA 06501

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  This image captures several important targets of the Cassini mission: Icy moons, rings, and the gaps in the rings that may contain small undiscovered moons.

Mimas (396 kilometers, 246 miles across) is easily seen near lower right. Epimetheus (113 kilometers 70 miles across) is visible left of center.

The 4,800 kilometer (2,980 mile) -wide Cassini division is the dark swath at upper left. The Encke Gap (325 kilometers, 202 miles wide) is visible as a dark curve near the edge of the A ring. The thin F ring is seen here, exterior to the main rings.

The image was taken in visible light with the narrow angle camera on September 10, 2004 from a distance of 8.9 million kilometers (5.5 million miles) from Mimas and at a Sun-Mimas-spacecraft, or phase, angle of 84 degrees. The image scale is 53 kilometers (33 miles) per pixel. The image was magnified by a factor of four to aid visibility.

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 19, 2004 (PIA 06501)
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