Cast Shadow

The shadow of Mimas falls across the Cassini Division in this beautiful natural color, wide-angle view from Cassini’s camera. Views like these are possible only once every 15 years, as Saturn’s spring and autumn equinoxes bring its rings and moons into horizontal alignment with the equitorial plane of the solar system and the light of…

Streaking Past Pallene

The bright point of light in this raw image isn’t a star. It’s one of Saturn’s 61 known moons, the tiny 3-mile-wide Pallene (pronounced pal-LEE-nee). This little moon’s orbit is between those of much larger Mimas and Enceladus, around 131,000 miles out from Saturn. Only recently discovered in 2004 by the Cassini team, not much…

A Procession of Moons

  With Saturn angled such that its ring plane is aligned with Earth’s orbit, its rings appear as a thin band and several of its moons can be seen crossing its face in this photo, taken by the Hubble Space Telescope on February 24, 2009. The smaller moons closer to the rings are, left to…

Glamour Shot

  A nicely-modeled Mimas, in sunlit backlighting and a soft cast from reflected light off Saturn. Taken by the Cassini orbiter on January 23 at a distance of 316,ooo miles. (Mimas is about 246 miles wide.) Image credit NASA/JPL/Space Science Institute

Above the Rings

One of many moons, little Mimas seems to hover above the vast sweeping rings of Saturn in this Cassini image. (It actually lies in the same plane as the rings.) The orbiter was nearly 2 million miles away from Mimas when this photo was taken last September.  Saturn has 52 officially named moons. Mimas is…