CICLOPS: Cassini Imaging Central Laboratory for OPerationS
Highlighting Herschel

Highlighting Herschel
PIA 11540

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  Herschel Crater dominates this view of Saturn's moon Mimas.

The 130-kilometer, or 80-mile, wide crater is located in the middle latitudes of Mimas (396 kilometers, 246 miles across).

The most brightly lit terrain seen here, lit by the sun, is on the leading hemisphere of the moon. Light reflected from Saturn dimly lights the other side of the moon. This view is centered on terrain at 37 degrees north latitude, 300 degrees west longitude. The north pole of Mimas lies on the terminator about a quarter of the way inward from the top of the image.

Scale in the original image was 10 kilometers (6 miles) per pixel. The image has been magnified by a factor of two and contrast-enhanced to aid visibility. The image was taken in visible light with the Cassini spacecraft narrow-angle camera on June 3, 2009. The view was obtained at a distance of approximately 1.7 million kilometers (1.1 million miles) from Mimas and at a Sun-Mimas-spacecraft, or phase, angle of 119 degrees.

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: July 21, 2009 (PIA 11540)
Image/Caption Information

Alliance Member Comments
Red_dragon (Aug 8, 2009 at 2:10 PM):
It's beautiful, but also somewhat intimidating; it looks as the "eye in the sky" of that song of Alan Parsons Project that has that title.