Help Shape the Future of Space Exploration

Join The Planetary Society Now  arrow.png

Join our eNewsletter for updates & action alerts

    Please leave this field empty

Headshot of Emily Lakdawalla

Mimas, Prometheus, and rings in motion

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla

22-10-2008 17:18 CDT


Here's an entry from the "just plain cool" department: an animation of 20 recent Cassini images, watching Mimas occult Prometheus as the shadowed face of the rings moves across the background. Cassini takes these "mutual event" movies mostly to refine the precision of orbital information of the various bodies. But I like to think that they also get just a little bit of priority because they look so cool.

Mimas, Prometheus, and the rings in motion

NASA / JPL / SSI / animation by Emily Lakdawalla

Mimas, Prometheus, and the rings in motion
Cassini took the 20 images that make up this animation on October 20, 2008. Cassini stayed pointed at Mimas, the innermost of Saturn's round moons, as the vast ring system (mostly the A and F rings) swept through the field of view; also crossing the frame is the inner shepherd of the F ring, potato-shaped Prometheus. At the time, Cassini was positioned slightly above the plane of the rings; since it's late winter in Saturn's northern hemisphere, Cassini is looking onto the shadowed side of the rings, while Mimas and Prometheus are fully lit by the Sun. In some of the frames, a faint wisp of a stream of material drawn out from the F ring by Prometheus is visible. Click here to download the full-resolution version (animated GIF, 2.25 MB).

See other posts from October 2008


Or read more blog entries about:


Leave a Comment:

You must be logged in to submit a comment. Log in now.
Facebook Twitter Email RSS AddThis

Blog Search

There's More to Explore!

Double your Impact

Are you coming with us? Support our year-end giving campaign and matching funds will double your impact up to $100,000.

Respond by January 15 to double your impact on space exploration!

Donate Today

Featured Images

Orion ESM test article
LightSail-B on the bench
Blue Origin New Shepard after first landing
New Shepard test flight and booster landing
More Images

Featured Video

MISSIONS: Dawn In The Asteroid Belt With Marc Rayman

Watch Now

Space in Images

Pretty pictures and
awe-inspiring science.

See More

Selfies to Space!

Take flight with a selfie on LightSail™ in 2016!

Send a Selfie Now

Connect With Us

Facebook! Twitter! Google+ and more…
Continue the conversation with our online community!