A Friday With Cassini

Hey, sky fans. Happy Friday! Here’s to you for getting through again. I hope you’ve had a good week. I came across this photo again earlier this week, about coming across it for the first time about a year ago, and wanted to share it again.

What you’re looking at is gorgeous photo of crescents of Saturn’s moons Rhea (top), Titan (middle), and Mimas (bottom) shot by NASA’s Cassini probe at about 1.2 million miles from Titan, presumably on 35mm slide film with a manual-focus Nikon F.

If you look closely, you’ll see Titan appears fuzzy, and its crescent is more crescenty (sure, crescenty is a good word) than the others. That’s because of its thick atmosphere—it’s the only Moon known to have a thick atmosphere—which is playing tricks with the reflected and refracted light.

Cassini has been making its way around the Saturn system since 2004, and has sent back spectacular photo after spectacular photo since. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, the people who work the cameras on the Cassini probe have one of the best jobs in the solar system, and are incredible at it. The things we’ve seen and learned from Cassini have been remarkable.

Clear skies, and have a great weekend, everyone!

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