From Saturn to Jupiter
25 March 2007



Credit: NASA/JPL/Space Science Institute


Orbiting Saturn since July 2004, the international Cassini spacecraft acquired a natural-color image of Saturn's planetary twin, Jupiter.


As seen from Saturn orbit, Jupiter shines as a banded orb, with red, white and brown cloud bands. Jupiter was about 1,800 million km from Cassini. The Earth was at a considerably smaller distance when Cassini imaged it in September 2006. However, in that picture, our blue living Earth was only about a pixel wide.


This is not the first time Cassini observes Jupiter. In December 2000, Cassini observed Jupiter from a much closer range, when it flew by the mighty planet for a gravity assist.


Red, green and blue spectral filters were applied to create this natural color composite image. It was taken with Cassini's narrow-angle camera on 8 February 2007. The phase, or Sun-Jupiter spacecraft, angle was 50°.


Image scale in the original image was about 10,000 km per pixel. The image was contrast-enhanced and magnified by a factor of 2.


Further reading

Cassini-Huygens Mission

A Distant Blue Planet

Aymen Mohamed Ibrahem

Senior Astronomy Specialist


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