CICLOPS: Cassini Imaging Central Laboratory for OPerationS
Icy Crown on Tethys

Icy Crown on Tethys
PIA 10582

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  Like the lengthy story of its Greek king namesake, the humongous Odysseus impact basin stretches on and on across Tethys.

The 450-kilometer (280-mile) wide Odysseus is a well-preserved example of an ancient multi-ringed impact basin. The outer ring's steep, cliff-like walls descend to broad internal terraces. The inner ring consists of a circular band of icy mountains creating a crown shape with a diameter of 140 kilometers (88-miles).

This view looks toward the leading hemisphere of Tethys (1062 kilometers, 660 miles across). North on Tethys is up and rotated 2 degrees to the right. The image was taken in visible light with the Cassini spacecraft narrow-angle camera on Jan. 2, 2009. The view was obtained at a distance of approximately 816,000 kilometers (507,000 miles) from Tethys and at a Sun-Tethys-spacecraft, or phase, angle of 58 degrees. Image scale is 5 kilometers (3 miles) per pixel.

The Cassini Equinox Mission is a joint United States and European endeavor. The Jet Propulsion Laboratory, a division of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, manages the mission for NASA's Science Mission Directorate, Washington, D.C. The Cassini orbiter was designed, developed and assembled at JPL. 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 Equinox Mission visit, and

Credit: NASA/JPL/Space Science Institute
Released: February 19, 2009 (PIA 10582)
Image/Caption Information

Alliance Member Comments
Dragon_of_Luck_Mah_Jonng1971 (Mar 4, 2009 at 1:54 PM):
You can estimate better the outer ring's height of the Odysseus basin near the terminator.