Dione’s Wispy Cliffs

First spotted by the Voyager spacecraft thirty years ago, it wasn’t until Cassini that the linear features criscrossing Saturn’s moon Dione known as “wispy lines” were confirmed to be the icy faces of high cliff walls rising hundreds of feet from the moon’s frozen surface. Possibly caused by tectonic activity Dione’s cliff walls shine brightly…

Details of Dione

Here’s some awesome just-released raw images from Cassini’s flyby of Dione earlier this morning! The low angle of sunlight brings out the detail of the moon’s rugged terrain, peppered with ancient craters of all sizes and gouged by long scars of steep, icy cliffs. Fantastic! Thanks to team leader Carolyn Porco for alerting us to…

Wispy Lines

A closer look at the surface of Rhea, Saturn’s second-largest moon, reveals some of its signature “wispy lines”…the bright exposed faces of steep cliffs on the icy 950-mile-wide moon. Taken by the Cassini spacecraft on June 3, 2010, the image above has been level-adjusted to bring out surface details. Being composed of 75% water ice,…

Holy Dione

The heavily creased and cratered face of 700-mile-wide Dione is partially lit by the Sun in this image from Cassini, taken on March 4. Some of the moon’s characteristic “wispy lines” can be seen along its sunlit limb…these are the bright, exposed walls of icy canyons caused by ancient tectonic activity. The darker surface material…