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The Bruce Murray Space Image Library

Saturn as seen from VIMS

Saturn as seen from VIMS

NASA / JPL / SSI / Gordan Ugarkovic

Saturn as seen from VIMS
Cassini's Visual and Infrared Mapping Spectrometer lacks the spatial resolution of the cameras, but it achieves much more accurate color. The top image is a mosaic of 9 VIMS data cubes; the bottom row shows Saturn as viewed between 2006 and 2008.

Several natural color mosaics of Saturn from Cassini's Visual and Infrared Mapping Spectrometer. While the instrument lacks spatial resolution (the above imagery was magnified 4 times), it compensates by being able to split each of the 64x64 pixels into 352 separate wavelengths. Among other things, this enables more accurate color representation than what is possible by using filtered images from Cassini's ISS cameras, so it serves as a reality check on ISS color images.

The top image is a mosaic of 9 VIMS data cubes, with gapfill at the left ring ansa provided by a lower resolution image. Two dim specks below the rings at right are Enceladus (brighter) and Mimas (above Enceladus barely noticeable).

The bottom row shows Saturn as viewed between 2006 and 2008 at varying phase angles and seasonal period (note the rightmost image is oldest and has ring shadows high up in the north compared to other images). As the ring shadows move south the blue color of the northern hemisphere is starting to fade turning greenish and then probably yellow.

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License. For uses not allowed by that license, contact us to request publication permission from the copyright holder: Gordan Ugarkovic

Original image data dated on or about January 1, 2008

Explore related images: pretty pictures, Cassini, amateur image processing, Saturn

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