THESE RAW, UNPROCESSED IMAGES of Saturn’s second largest moon, Rhea, were taken on March 10, 2012, by NASA’s Cassini spacecraft. This was a relatively distant flyby with a close-approach distance of 42,000 kilometres, well suited for global geologic mapping.
At 1,530 kilometres diameter, Rhea is the ninth-largest moon in the Solar System.
During the flyby, Cassini captured these views of the moon’s cratered surface, creating a 30-frame mosaic of Rhea’s leading hemisphere and the side of the moon that faces away from Saturn.
The observations included the large Mamaldi (480 kilometres across) and Tirawa (360 kilometres across) impact basins and the 47-kilometre-wide “ray crater”Inktomi, one of the youngest surface features on Rhea.
Cassini has been investigating Saturn and its moons since 2004. This included dropping a probe called Huygens onto the surface of Saturn’s largest moon, Titan, in 2005. Launched in 1997, Cassini-Huygens mission is a co-operative project of NASA, the European Space Agency and the Italian Space Agency.
See all of Cassini’s raw images at NASA’s Saturn page.
Adapted from information issued by NASA / JPL-Caltech / SSI.
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