The gravity of potato-shaped Prometheus periodically creates streamer-channels in the F ring, and the moon's handiwork can be seen in the dark channels in this image from NASA's Cassini spacecraft.
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Fleeing the Scene

Saturn's moon Prometheus, having perturbed the planet's thin F ring, continues in its orbit.

The gravity of potato-shaped Prometheus (86 kilometers, or 53 miles across) periodically creates streamer-channels in the F ring, and the moon's handiwork can be seen in the dark channels here. To learn more and to watch a movie of this process, see PIA08397.

This view looks toward the northern, sunlit side of the rings from about 10 degrees above the ringplane. A star is visible through the rings near the center right of the image.

The image was taken in visible light with the Cassini spacecraft narrow-angle camera on June 1, 2010. The view was acquired at a distance of approximately 1.3 million kilometers (808,000 miles) from Saturn. Image scale is 7 kilometers (4 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. NASA/JPL/Space Science Institute

Image details

ID#:
PIA12684

Date added:
2010-07-26

Target:
Prometheus

Mission:
Cassini-Huygens

Spacecraft:
Cassini Orbiter

Instruments:
Imaging Science Subsystem - Narrow Angle

Rating:



Views:
2,456

Full-Res TIFF:
PIA12684.tif (0.49 MB)

Full-Res JPG:
PIA12684.jpg (0.02 MB)

Image credit:
NASA/JPL/Space Science Institute