Giant pits cover the impact-eroded face of Hyperion, giving it a spongy appearance. The chaotically tumbling moon is extremely porous, like the moons orbiting in and near Saturn's rings.
Hyperion is 280 kilometers (174 miles) across.
The image was taken in visible light with the Cassini spacecraft narrow-angle camera on April 12, 2007 at a distance of approximately 1.1 million kilometers (700,000 miles) from Hyperion and at a Sun-Hyperion-spacecraft, or phase, angle of 46 degrees. Scale in the original image was 7 kilometers (4 miles) per pixel. The image was contrast enhanced and magnified by a factor of two.
The Cassini-Huygens mission is a cooperative project of NASA, the European Space Agency and the Italian Space Agency. The Jet Propulsion Laboratory, a division of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, manages the mission for NASA's Science Mission Directorate, Washington, D.C. The Cassini orbiter and its two onboard cameras were designed, developed and assembled at JPL. The imaging operations center is based at the Space Science Institute in Boulder, Colo.
For more information about the Cassini-Huygens mission visit http://saturn.jpl.nasa.gov/home/index.cfm. The Cassini imaging team homepage is at http://ciclops.org.