Spokes on the Wheel
As they wheel about the planet, Saturn's sunlit rings often exhibit dark,
radial markings called spokes.
Spokes are seen only in the broad B ring, and can also appear bright in
certain viewing geometries (see PIA08302).
This view looks toward the sunlit side of the rings from about 11 degrees
below the ringplane.
Pandora (81 kilometers, or 50 miles across) is a speck above the rings at
left. The planet's shadow darkens the ringplane at lower right.
The image was taken in visible light with the Cassini spacecraft
wide-angle camera on June 3, 2008. The view was acquired at a distance of
approximately 1 million kilometers (636,000 miles) from Saturn and at a
Sun-Saturn-spacecraft, or phase, angle of 19 degrees. Image scale is 61
kilometers (38 miles) per pixel.
The Cassini-Huygens mission is a cooperative project of NASA, the European
Space Agency and the Italian Space Agency. The Jet Propulsion Laboratory,
a division of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, manages
the mission for NASA's Science Mission Directorate, Washington, D.C. The
Cassini orbiter and its two onboard cameras were designed, developed and
assembled at JPL. The imaging operations center is based at the Space
Science Institute in Boulder, Colo.
For more information about the Cassini-Huygens mission visit
http://saturn.jpl.nasa.gov/. The Cassini imaging team
homepage is at http://ciclops.org.
courtesy NASA/JPL/Space Science Institute
image id: PIA10423