New Delhi: Since the time it was launched in space in 1997, NASA's Cassini mission has successfully delivered amazingly informative insights into the evolution and structure of the ringed planet. Through its adept photography abilities, the spacecraft has also sent back stunning images of Saturn, which have also helped divulge numerous secrets of the planet and its moons.
The ringed planet is certainly attracting attention thanks to Cassini and scientists and space enthusiasts are very much intrigued to know all the hidden secrets it holds.
Now, NASA has released yet another image beamed back by Cassini on September 9, 2016, which shows the planet's north pole bathed in sunlight!
Describing the image, NASA explained that the hexagon-shaped jet-stream is fully illuminated here. In this image, the planet appears darker in regions where the cloud deck is lower, such the region interior to the hexagon.
Mission experts on Saturn's atmosphere are taking advantage of the season and Cassini’s favorable viewing geometry to study this and other weather patterns as Saturn's northern hemisphere approaches Summer solstice.
This view looks toward the sunlit side of the rings from about 51 degrees above the ring plane. The image was taken with the Cassini spacecraft wide-angle camera on Sept. 9, 2016 using a spectral filter which preferentially admits wavelengths of near-infrared light centered at 728 nanometers, NASA said.
Needless to say, the photograph is beautiful!