CICLOPS: Cassini Imaging Central Laboratory for OPerationS
Serene Enceladus

Serene Enceladus
PIA 11520

Avg Rating: 8.65/10

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  Saturn's moon Enceladus looks tranquil here, concealing the true nature of this active moon.

To learn about the icy plumes jetting from Enceladus' south polar region, see PIA10502 and PIA08386.

Lit terrain seen here is on the anti-Saturn side of Enceladus (504 kilometers, 313 miles across). North on Enceladus is up. The image was taken in visible light with the Cassini spacecraft narrow-angle camera on May 10, 2009. The view was obtained at a distance of approximately 766,000 kilometers (476,000 miles) from Enceladus and at a Sun-Enceladus-spacecraft, or phase, angle of 50 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: June 23, 2009 (PIA 11520)
Image/Caption Information

Alliance Member Comments
mipsandbips (Jun 26, 2009 at 7:56 PM):
Distant images such as this one provide clues as to where
underground oceans may have existed on the surface. The subtle
differences in shadings on Enceladus may provide much broader
insight into these facts.
Dragon_of_Luck_Mah_Jonng1971 (Jun 23, 2009 at 12:24 PM):
Small picture, but nonetheless interesting showing no clear hints of impact craters at this resolution and showing a lot of linear and sinous features resulting of interior activity.