Photos: Saturn's Glorious Rings Up Close

Saturn's Shadow and Rings

NASA/JPL-Caltech/Space Science Institute

Among the interplay of Saturn's shadow and rings, Mimas, which appears in the lower-right corner of the image, orbits Saturn as a set of the ever-intriguing spokes appear in the B ring (just to the right of center). Image released March 3, 2014. [Read the Full Story Behind This Photo Here]

Saturn's rings on Aug. 22, 2009

NASA/JPL-Caltech/Space Science Institute

NASA's Cassini spacecraft captured this view of Saturn's rings on Aug. 22, 2009.

Saturn's Hexagon and RIngs

NASA/JPL-Caltech/Space Science Institute

Saturn's odd hexagonal jet stream swirls in this amazing photo taken by the Cassini spacecraft. Image released Feb. 3, 2014. [Read the Full Story Behind this Image Here]

Saturn, Janus and Mimas

NASA / JPL-Caltech / Space Science Institute

This photo, taken in August by the Cassini orbiter, shows Saturn, Janus and Mimas as well as the planet's distinctive rings.

Mimas Dwarfed by Saturn

NASA/JPL-Caltech/Space Science Institute

Saturn's moon Mimas appears near Saturn, dwarfed by its parent planet in this image. Mimas (246 miles, or 396 kilometers across) appears tiny compared to the storms clearly visible in far northern and southern hemispheres of Saturn. The image was taken with the Cassini spacecraft wide-angle camera on Aug. 20, 2012.

2012 View of Saturn's Rings


NASA's Cassini spacecraft has recently resumed the kind of orbits that allow for spectacular views of Saturn's rings. This image was obtained on May 23, 2012.

Snowball Fight in Saturn's Rings


From the inside out, the "Cassini division" in faint red at left is followed by the A ring in its entirety in this ultraviolet-light image. The A ring begins with a "dirty" interior of red followed by more blue as it spreads away from the planet. The blue is a signature of water ice. The red band roughly three-fourths of the way outward in the A ring is known as the Encke gap.

Striking New Photo and Video of Saturn's Rings

NASA/JPL/Space Science Institute

The movement of waves in Saturn's rings offers clues to activity and conditions within the planet. This natural-color view of Saturn was taken from 764,000 miles (1.2 million kilometers) away.

Saturn Surprises Spur Cassini Mission Reprise

NASA/JPL/Space Science Institute

The most detailed image ever made of Saturn and its rings was sent by the Cassini spacecraft on October 6, 2004.

Saturn's Rings Older Than First Thought?


Saturn's magnificent rings star in this donut-like view taken by the Cassini spacecraft. The planet itself has been removed from view, blotted out to highlight the intricate set of rings as Cassini passed over head at an elevation of about 60 degrees - the probe's highest yet vantage point of Saturn. This image is actually a compilation of 27 separate views - nine separate sets of red, green and blue components - taken over about 45 minutes and then assembled into a mosaic by scientists on Earth. It is one of several released March 1, 2007 by NASA, though the image group was taken in late January, 2007. Cassini used its wide-angle camera to photograph Saturn's rings from a distance of about one million miles (1.6 million kilometers). The moons Epimetheus (in the one o'clock position), Pandora (at five o'clock), and Janus (10 o'clock) are visible in this view.

Hints of Unseen Moons in Saturn's Rings

NASA/Cassini/U. of Colorado

Bright bands in the left part of the image are peaks of a density wave

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