Many of the elegant structures in Saturn's rings result from the influence of the planet's moons. Seen here at center is the Cassini Division, flanked at top and bottom by the outer B-ring edge and the inner A-ring edge, respectively.
The gravitational influence of the moon Mimas is responsible for the Cassini Division. See Expanse of Ice for a labeled map of Saturn's rings.
The view looks toward the unilluminated side of the rings from about 33 degrees above the ringplane. The image was taken in visible light with the Cassini spacecraft narrow-angle camera on Aug. 2, 2008. The view was obtained at a distance of approximately 1 million kilometers (639,000 miles) from Saturn. Image scale is 6 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 .
Credit: NASA/JPL/Space Science Institute