This mosaic of three images shows an area within the Valhalla region on Jupiter's moon, Callisto. North is to the top of the mosaic and the Sun illuminates the surface from the left. The smallest details that can be discerned in this picture are knobs and small impact craters about 160 meters (175 yards) across. The mosaic covers an area approximately 45 kilometers (28 miles) across. It shows part of a prominent crater chain located on the northern part of the Valhalla ring structure.
Crater chains can form from the impact of material ejected from large impacts (forming secondary chains) or by the impact of a fragmented projectile, perhaps similar to the Shoemaker-Levy 9 cometary impacts into Jupiter in July 1994. It is believed this crater chain was formed by the impact of a fragmented projectile. The images which form this mosaic were obtained by the solid state imaging system aboard NASA's Galileo spacecraft on Nov. 4, 1996 (Universal Time).
Launched in October 1989, Galileo entered orbit around Jupiter on December 7, 1995. The spacecraft's mission is to conduct detailed studies of the giant planet, its largest moons and the Jovian magnetic environment. The Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, CA manages the mission for NASA's Office of Space Science, Washington, DC.
This image and other images and data received from Galileo are posted on the World Wide Web Galileo mission home page at http://galileo.jpl.nasa.gov. Background information and educational context for the images can be found at http:// www.jpl.nasa.gov/galileo/sepo.