The Cassini spacecraft spies a "fan" in Saturn's tenuous F ring.
This fan-like structure appears as dark lines spreading outward from the left of the bright clump of ring material near the center of the image. See PIA12784 and PIA12786 to learn more about fans.
This view looks toward the northern, sunlit side of the rings from about 10 degrees above the ringplane. Several background stars are visible, including two that can be seen through the ring.
The image was taken in visible light with the Cassini spacecraft narrow-angle camera on June 1, 2010. The view was acquired at a distance of approximately 1.3 million kilometers (808,000 miles) from Saturn and at a sun-Saturn-spacecraft, or phase, angle of 119 degrees. Image scale is 7 kilometers (4 miles) per pixel.
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/. The Cassini imaging team homepage is at http://ciclops.org.