This new image from NASA’s Cassini Spacecraft reveals a gored clump in Saturn’s F ring.
Saturn’s dynamic F ring contains many different types of features to keep scientists perplexed. In this image we see features ring scientists call “gores,” to the right of the bright clump, and a “jet,” to the left of the bright spot.
Thanks to the ring’s interaction with the moons Prometheus and Pandora, and perhaps a host of smaller moonlets hidden in its core, the F ring is a constantly changing structure, with features that form, fade and re-appear on timescales of hours to days.
This view looks toward the unilluminated side of the rings from about 7 degrees below the ring plane. The image was taken in visible light with the Cassini spacecraft narrow-angle camera on March 15, 2015.
The view was acquired at a distance of approximately 295,000 miles (475,000 kilometers) from Saturn and at a Sun-ring-spacecraft, or phase, angle of 117 degrees. Image scale is 1.8 miles (2.9 kilometers) per pixel.
Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Space Science Institute