Search form


These news clips on global space news are provided by the Coalition for Space Exploration for distribution by the Space Foundation to our constituents. You can also subscribe to receive a daily email version.

Cassini’s Ultra-Close Flyby of Saturn Moon

NASA’s Cassini spacecraft has made the closest fly of Saturn’s moon, Dione.

Caught by the Cassini image equipment – two smaller moons, Epimetheus and Prometheus, near the planet’s ring system.

How did this impressive flyby of the moon stack up overall?

This encounter was the spacecraft’s closest pass of the moon’s surface. However, because this flyby was intended primarily for other Cassini instruments, it did not yield Cassini’s best images of the natural satellite.

For you stat seekers, Dione is 698 miles, or 1,123 kilometers across.

Potato-shaped Prometheus is 53 miles, or 86 kilometers across, and appears above the rings near the center top of the image.

Epimetheus is 70 miles, or 113 kilometers across, and is on the right.

Next Encounter with a moon of Saturn is a Cassini flyby of Titan on January 30th.

Cassini was launched in October 1997 with the European Space Agency’s Huygens probe. The probe landed on Titan’s surface on Jan. 14, 2005, and returned spectacular results.

The Cassini-Huygens mission is a cooperative project of NASA, the European Space Agency and the Italian Space Agency. Current plans to extend the Cassini mission through 2017 will supply a continued bounty of scientifically rewarding and majestic views of Saturn and its moons and rings

Image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Space Science Institute



Share This Page

Share this page with friends and bookmark for future reference.

Share on Facebook Tweet This Share on LinkedIn

Additional networks and bookmarking websites:


Give Us Feedback

We want to hear from you! Feel free to send us your comments about this page. General feedback for the Space Foundation is also welcome.