Saturday, October 29, 2011

Four Moons

It's been quite a while, hasn't it? But here's another gorgeous photo from Cassini: four moons and the edge of the rings. Ids are below the photo - see if you can spot all four. (Select the photo for a bigger version; you might need it!)

Titan, Dione, Pandora, the rings, and Pan

The most obvious one is Dione, of course, bright and in the center of the shot. Behind Dione is giant Titan. Off to the right, at the tip of the rings, is little Pandora, an F-ring shepherd. Did you find the fourth one?

Look at the rings. See the dark gap? That's the Encke gap. Look closely. See the bright speck? That's Pan - tiny, tiny Pan, only 35 km (21.7 miles) across. Pan is a ring shepherd, and helps maintain the Encke Gap, keeping it clear of ring particles.

As always, see the Cassini home page for more.

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