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Closest View of Helene

30 Jun 2017, 03:44 UTC
Closest View of Helene
(200 words excerpt, click title or image to see full post)

NASA dixit:
“March 3, 2010. The Cassini spacecraft snapped this image during the spacecraft’s closest flyby of Saturn’s moon Helene (33 kilometers, or 21 miles across). The small moon leads the much larger Dione by 60 degrees in the moons’ shared orbit. Helene is a “Trojan” moon of Dione, named for the Trojan asteroids that orbit 60 degrees ahead of and behind Jupiter as the giant planet circles the Sun.
Lit terrain seen here is on the anti-Saturn side of Helene. The south pole of the moon is in the lower right of the image. The image was taken in visible light with the Cassini spacecraft wide-angle camera. The view was obtained at a distance of approximately 1,900 kilometers (1,200 miles) from Helene and at a Sun-Helene-spacecraft, or phase, angle of 90 degrees. Scale in the original image was 235 meters (771 feet) per pixel. The image has been magnified by a factor of two and contrast-enhanced to aid visibility.”
“After almost 20 years in space, NASA’s Cassini spacecraft begins the final chapter of its remarkable story of exploration: its Grand Finale. Between April and September 2017, Cassini will undertake a daring set of orbits that is, in many ways, ...

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