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A Nice View of Enceladus

A Nice View of Enceladus

Cassini’s portrait of Eneladus. Click for larger. Image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Space Science Institute

A nice look at Enceladus with the ring plane above and the jets are visible at the bottom.

Like Elphaba aka: the much maligned and misunderstood Wicked Witch of the West getting splashed with water, my internet connection seems to be melting, melting. Grrr.

Here’s the Cassini caption:

A crescent Enceladus appears with Saturn’s rings in this Cassini spacecraft view of the moon.

The famed jets of water ice emanating from the south polar region of the moon are faintly visible here. They appear as a small white blur below the dark south pole, down and to the right of the illuminated part of the moon’s surface in the image. The image’s contrast was enhanced to increase the visibility of the jets. See PIA11688 to learn more about the jets.

Lit terrain seen here is on the trailing hemisphere of Enceladus (313 miles, 504 kilometers across). North on Enceladus is up.

This view looks toward the northern, sunlit side of the rings from just above the ringplane.

The image was taken in visible light with the Cassini spacecraft narrow-angle camera on Jan. 4, 2012. The view was obtained at a distance of approximately 181,000 miles (291,000 kilometers) from Enceladus and at a Sun-Enceladus-spacecraft, or phase, angle of 136 degrees. Image scale is 1 mile (2 kilometers) per pixel.

Tom’s Astronomy Blog

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