During its closest ever dive past the active south polar region of Saturn's moon Enceladus, NASA's Cassini spacecraft quickly shuttered its imaging cameras to capture glimpses of the fast moving terrain below.
This view from NASA's Cassini spacecraft shows battered terrain around the north pole of Saturn's icy moon Enceladus. Craters crowd and overlap each other, each one recording an impact in the moon's distant past.
Titan and Saturn share a hazy appearance in this image from NASA's Cassini spacecraft, though Saturn is a gas giant with no solid surface to speak of, and Titan's atmosphere is a blanket surrounding an icy, solid body.
The night sides of Saturn and Tethys are dark places indeed. This image from NASA's Cassini spacecraft shows shadows are darker areas than sunlit areas, and in space, with no air to scatter the light, shadows can appear almost totally black.
Why does Saturn look like it's been painted with a dark brush in this infrared image, but Dione looks untouched? NASA's Cassini spacecraft took this image in a wavelength that is absorbed by -- methane.
This view from NASA's Cassini spacecraft looks toward Saturn's icy moon Dione, with giant Saturn and its rings in the background, just prior to the mission's final close approach to the moon on August 17, 2015.
Saturn's unusual appearance in this image from NASA's Cassini spacecraft is a result of the planet being imaged via an infrared filter. Infrared images can help scientists determine the location of clouds in the planet's atmosphere.
Titan may be a 'large' moon -- its name even implies it -- but it is still dwarfed by its parent planet, Saturn. As it turns out, this is perfectly normal. This image is from NASA's Cassini spacecraft.
In this image from NASA's Cassini spacecraft, two large craters on Tethys, near the line where day fades to night, almost resemble two giant eyes observing Saturn. Tethys is significantly closer to the camera, while the planet is in the background.
From a distance Saturn seems to exude an aura of serenity and peace in this image from NASA's Cassini spacecraft. In spite of this appearance, Saturn is an active and dynamic world. Mimas is seen to the upper-right of Saturn.
NASA's Cassini captured these views of Saturn's icy moon Rhea on Feb. 9. The spacecraft returned to equatorial orbits around Saturn in March after nearly two years, allowing the mission to once again have close encounters with moons other than Titan.
From afar, Saturn's rings look like a solid, homogenous disk of material. But upon closer examination from NASA's Cassini spacecraft, we see that there are varied structures in the rings at almost every scale imaginable.
NASA's Cassini orbiter shows Saturn's main rings, seen here on their 'lit' face, appear much darker than normal. That's because they tend to scatter light back toward its source -- in this case, the Sun.
NASA's Cassini orbiter shows that Enceladus (visible in the lower-left corner of the image) is but a speck before enormous Saturn, but even a small moon can generate big waves of excitement throughout the scientific community.
NASA's Cassini orbiter shows Saturn is circled by its rings (nearly edge-on in this image), as well as by the moons Tethys (the large bright body near the lower right corner) and Mimas (seen as a slight crescent against Saturn's disk above the rings).