Cassini zooms past Dione

June 19, 2015 by Elizabeth Landau And Preston Dyches, Jet Propulsion Laboratory
NASA's Cassini imaging scientists processed this view of Saturn's moon Dione, taken during a close flyby on June 16, 2015. This was Cassini's fourth targeted flyby of Dione and the spacecraft had a close approach altitude of 321 miles (516 kilometers) from Dione's surface. Also making an appearance in this image is Saturn's geysering moon Enceladus, seen in the upper right, just above the bright line of Saturn's rings. Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Space Science Institute

The rugged landscape of Saturn's fracture-faced moon Dione is revealed in images sent back by NASA's Cassini spacecraft from its latest flyby. Cassini buzzed past Dione on June 16, coming within 321 miles (516 kilometers) of the moon's surface.

On Aug. 17, the spacecraft will make its final flyby of Dione, diving to within 295 miles (474 kilometers) of the surface. The final Dione encounter will be Cassini's second-closest brush with the icy moon. A December 2011 flyby saw the spacecraft reach an altitude of just 60 miles (100 kilometers) above Dione.

The Cassini-Huygens mission is a cooperative project of NASA, ESA (European Space Agency) and the Italian Space Agency. NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California, manages the mission for the agency's Science Mission Directorate in Washington. JPL is a division of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena. The Cassini imaging operations center is based at the Space Science Institute in Boulder, Colorado.

NASA's Cassini imaging scientists processed this view of Saturn's moon Dione, taken during a close flyby on June 16, 2015. This was Cassini's fourth targeted flyby of Dione and the spacecraft had a close approach altitude of 321 miles (516 kilometers) from Dione's surface. The bright rings of Saturn can be seen at left, in the background of the image. Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Space Science Institute

More information: Raw, unprocessed images from the flyby are available via the Cassini mission website at: saturn.jpl.nasa.gov/photos/raw
A selection of some of the images is also available from the Cassini imaging team's website at: www.ciclops.org/view_event/212 … -REV-217-RAW-PREVIEW

Provided by: Jet Propulsion Laboratory