Saturn's rings, c 2000.

Saturn's rings, c 2000.
4 0 c m
actual image size: 28cm x 32cm


Mimas drifts along in its orbit against the azure backdrop of Saturn's northern latitudes in this true colour view from NASA's Cassini spacecraft. The long, dark lines on the atmosphere are shadows cast by the planet's rings. Saturn's northern hemisphere is presently relatively cloud-free, and rays of sunlight take a long path through the atmosphere. This results in sunlight being scattered at shorter (bluer) wavelengths, thus giving the northernmost latitudes their bluish appearance at visible wavelengths.

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© National Aeronautics & Space Administration / Science & Society

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