What could once only be seen from Earth peering through a telescope can now be seen up-close: the pockmarked surface of Saturn's second-largest moon, Rhea.
Thanks to images taken by NASA's Cassini spacecraft on a recent flyby, we now have new, sharper views of Rhea, one of the four moons of Saturn that was first observed in 1672 by Italian astronomer Giovanni Domenico Cassini.
See up-close photos of Saturn's pockmarked moon, Rhea, the ringed planet's second-largest moon.
So what can we see in these incredible photographs?
- The surface of Rhea has deep pockmarks.
- There are two huge impact basins clearly visible on the moon's icy surface: the 300-mile-wide Mimaldi basin and the 200-mile Tirawa basin.
- The crater Inktomi is 29 miles wide and one of the youngest surface features on Rhea.
The images, which were part of a global geologic mapping project, were shot from a distance of 26,000 miles and included a 30-frame mosaic of Rhea's leading hemisphere and the side of the moon that faces away from Saturn.
Funded by NASA and the European and Italian space agencies, Cassini was launched in 1997. It reached Saturn in 2004 and has been studying the ringed planet and its numerous moons.
--From the Editors at Netscape