Saturn’s splendid rings made visible by sunlight. Image credit: NASA/JPL/SSI. Click to enlarge
This view shows the unlit side of Saturn’s splendid rings made visible by sunlight filtering through the rings from the lit side. Light from the illuminated side of the rings brightens the night side of the planet’s southern hemisphere with “ringshine” (seen here at lower right). The feeble glow from transmitted light dimly illuminates the planet’s northern half.
Saturn’s shadow stretches across the rings toward lower left.
The image was taken in visible light with the Cassini spacecraft wide-angle camera on June 8, 2005, at a distance of approximately 477,000 kilometers (296,000 miles) from Saturn. The image scale is 25 kilometers (15 miles) 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 mission for NASA’s Science Mission Directorate, Washington, D.C. The Cassini orbiter and its two onboard cameras were designed, developed and assembled at JPL. The imaging team is based at the Space Science Institute, Boulder, Colo.
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Original Source: NASA/JPL/SSI News Release