New Cassini Image – Peeking Over Saturn’s Shoulder

Peeking Over Saturn's Shoulder

Unlike Earth-based telescopes, spacecraft like Cassini can capture unique views of Saturn’s sunlit side from different angles. This image, taken on October 28, 2016, shows the sunlit side of the rings from about 25 degrees above the ring plane. Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Space Science Institute

This newly released Cassini image shows Saturn in a way no Earth-based telescope ever could.

No Earth-based telescope could ever capture a view quite like this. Earth-based views can only show Saturn’s daylit side, from within about 25 degrees of Saturn’s equatorial plane. A spacecraft in orbit, like Cassini, can capture stunning scenes that would be impossible from our home planet.

This view looks toward the sunlit side of the rings from about 25 degrees (if Saturn is dominant in the image) above the ring plane. The image was taken in violet light with the Cassini spacecraft wide-angle camera on October 28, 2016.

The view was obtained at a distance of approximately 810,000 miles (1.3 million kilometers) from Saturn. The image scale is 50 miles (80 kilometers) per pixel.

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