CICLOPS: Cassini Imaging Central Laboratory for OPerationS
Faint Spokes on a Ring

This high-phase image from Cassini shows dark areas separating faint spokes that are brighter than the rest Saturn's B ring.

At a Sun-Saturn-spacecraft, or phase, angle of 122 degrees, light is scattered from the dusty spokes toward Cassini's cameras. See PIA10567 to learn more about spokes. The shadow of Saturn cuts across the bottom of the image. Several background stars are visible.

This view looks toward the unilluminated side of the rings from about 39 degrees above the ringplane. The image was taken in visible light with the Cassini spacecraft wide-angle camera on Feb. 24, 2009. The view was obtained at a distance of approximately 887,000 kilometers (551,000 miles) from Saturn. Image scale is 50 kilometers (31 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: June 24, 2009 (PIA 11521)
Image/Caption Information
  Faint Spokes on a Ring
PIA 11521

Avg Rating: 9.35/10

Full Size 1014x1014:
PNG 399 KB