CICLOPS: Cassini Imaging Central Laboratory for OPerationS
Pan's Gap

The Encke Gap in Saturn's A ring is maintained by the presence of the moon Pan, which shares the gap with several diffuse ringlets.

Irregularities in the inner (left side) edge of the gap result from perturbations caused by Pan as it sweeps through the 325-kilometer (200-mile) wide lane.

This view looks toward the sunlit side of the rings from about 38 degrees below the ringplane.

The image was taken in visible light with the Cassini spacecraft narrow-angle camera on May 10, 2008. The view was acquired at a distance of approximately 264,000 kilometers (164,000 miles) from Saturn. Image scale is 1 kilometer (0.6 mile) 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: June 12, 2008 (PIA 10402)
Image/Caption Information
  Pan's Gap
PIA 10402

Avg Rating: 9.23/10

Full Size 1020x1020:
PNG 576 KB