Wave-making moon

230117 daphnis 1
NASA / JPL-Caltech / Space Science Institute

The wavemaker moon, Daphnis, is featured in this view, taken as NASA’s Cassini spacecraft made one of its ring-grazing passes over the outer edges of Saturn’s rings on 16 January 2017. This is the closest view of the small moon obtained yet.

Daphnis (eight kilometres across) orbits within the 42-kilometre-wide Keeler Gap. Cassini’s viewing angle causes the gap to appear narrower than it actually is. The little moon’s gravity raises waves in the edges of the gap in both the horizontal and vertical directions.

The image above was taken in visible (green) light with the Cassini spacecraft narrow-angle camera at a distance of approximately 28,000 kilometres from Daphnis.

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