31 thoughts on “The Images Have Arrived!”

  1. WOW… Great work guys. The School run for my son tomorrow means I have to go to bed now, but I have lots to look forward to tomorrow,

    Once more, congrats on a job well done…. AGAIN!!!

  2. One word: “WOW”.

    This is amazing work you guys are doing for mankind. Thank you for making these amazing RAW images immediately available to the public.

    The saying “a picture is worth a thousand words” would be an understatement at this point.

    Keep up the incredible work!

  3. wow amazing!
    “But I ask you: Is there ANYTHING more exciting, more thrilling, more stimulating to the mind, more gratifying to the soul than exploring news worlds?!!!”

    I guess not! 😉

  4. Congratulation Carolyn,

    Well done Cassini team, and to Paul Helfenstein (imaging team associate who planned the images) I am in awe really cool images man, congratulations. Carolyn Porco a BIG Thank you for showing us all on Earth, Saturn’s little moon Enceladus Tiger Stripes.

    Great images and a marvelous achievement


  5. Wow… just unbelievable, fantastic images… Many congratulations to everyone on the team who contributed to capturing these landmark images. “Classics” within moments of them being revealed to the world.

    Wish I could stay up longer to see more, but it’s 1am here in the UK and I’m at work in 6hrs, so bed for me… but WELL DONE!!!! There are a lot of people out here very, very proud of you!

    It would be helpful if you could give us an approximate idea of the edge size of the image window above in kilometres so that we can visualize the scale of the terrain features.
    Thank you.

  7. What wonderfully beautiful images of another world. Cassini never fails to amaze and inspire!
    Congratulations to the entire team for a difficult job well done.

  8. The linear feature extending left-right near the center of Skeet Shoot #3 image almost looks like a strike-slip fault. You can imagine shifting the lower half leftward to connect the prominent fracture on the right side of the image. If this is a cropped image, then the full image can probably prove me wrong.

    Regards, Ray

  9. Congratulations to the Cassini-Huygens Team.
    President Reagan once said something to the effect, “Most people wonder if they have ever made a difference in the world, Marines don’t have that problem.”
    I’d say NASA personnel don’t have that problem either.
    Your ability to plan and execute this mission continues to amaze and inspire me.
    To think that for ages adventurers used the moons of Saturn to navigate our world and now we’re able to say, “Hello, Saturnian system. Thank you, for teaching us so much for so long and for so much longer to come.”
    What a great time to be alive.
    Thanks to everyone for sharing their thoughts with this blog. I wish I could shake your hand.
    James Bonner

  10. |’m share with you your emotions. You are a first men who was sight this after billions years since the creation of the world!!!

  11. Breathtaking! Astounding! The pictures are incredible! The closeness of the picture-taking is incredible! And to think this is just the beginning… to HOPE this is just the beginning… Amazing job, everyone! Praise be to YHWH!

  12. Congratulations! Very impressive results.

    There is NOTHING MORE EXCITING than exploring new worlds! 🙂

    Great blog – makes it more alive to us outsiders.

  13. Well done!. From Spain, I tip my hat to you, not only for how well has worked the “skeet shot” technic, but quite specially for the magnificent of that images.
    If you didn’t say it’s Enceladus, it could be taken as a picture of Earth or Mars; it’s certainly impressive how a world so small as Enceladus can produce those landscapes.
    The more this mission progresses, the more I like it. Keep up the good work!.

  14. Nice photography! Your team makes us proud!
    It is this quest of knowledge that makes me proud to be an American.

  15. Congrats Carolyn and the rest of the team! Keep those amazing images coming, one word describes them….WOW!!


  16. I tried posting this last night, but it never got there…I’m trying again!

    I just have to ask, is it possible that the areas of softness in Skeet Shoot #7 could be caused by plumes, either active, or recently active? The softness could either be “snow” on the ground smoothing over the rough topography (having fallen back from the vent) or, could it be water vapor/ice in space above the fracture, explosively discharged from the fault line/vent moments before?

    Completely uninformed speculation, with a fair amount of imagination thrown in, but there appears to be, what might be described as a sheetlike fog that is visible above the fracture running horizontally across the top of the image, but it appears to fade with altitude (relative to the vent). I would assume that at some low altitude relative to an active vent, plumes might become transparent, as the pressure rapidly drops to vacuum. Just exiting the vents though, for a moment, shouldn’t there be a vapor that would obscure the surface, thus “softening” the image of the surface behind the vapor, relative to the spacecraft? The ice vapor, at it’s highest reflectivity, would still seem to be, in this front scattered light, very tenuous at best…and thus it might only cause a localized “softening” of line of sight objects seen through the ice vapor, very near the vent site.

    The interesting thing is, the surface immediately below the horizontal fracture’s (and to the right and left of the vertical aligned “soft” area extending from the bottom of the image) softened areas, is a very clear border between smooth and rough…a clear linear fracture with extremely high relief below it, and very low relief above it! A seemingly perfect spot for a plume to emanate from. Also…a complete guess on my part! I’m riffin’ here…and it’s fun!

    I recall, when the first images of Io came down, during the Voyager I flyby in 1979, I was lucky enough to see Al Hibbings (is the name right…been a long time) on PBS, covering the flyby live. I watched live as one of the images built up line by line, and as it turned out, it was a shot looking right down the inky black maw of one of Io’s many erupting volcanoes, Loki Patera I believe. There was an (soft looking) apron around that inky black “lake” which ended up being the plume from an erupting caldera. But…and this is the really fun part…NO ONE knew what they were looking at! The viewing public was as informed at that moment as anyone. No one had ever seen anything like it before, and no one knew what they were looking at! They figured it out, eventually, with the help of Linda Morabito and others…and the rest is history. But at that moment, as in this one, we’re all experts for a few minutes, and for me, that might be what it’s all about…a chance to be a virtual scient ist who gets an equal shot at describing the wonders of our solar system! And then stay tuned and see if it came anywhere near the real scientists evaluations.

    This image, Skeet Shoot #7 feels like that time to me. And I had fun guessing at what it shows! Thanks all, magnificent mission!!!!


  17. The image N00118363 is very interesting. At the very bottom of the image (horizontal in the image), there appears to be something in the shaded area at the bottom of the chasm, that looks like a river. I know it can’t be a river, but it looks very strange…could this be vapor, or possibly a recently active plume site? I’ve noticed this exact thing in several of the images, always in the shadows, illuminated by secondary, reflected light.

    Also, I have yet to spot a single crater in ANY of the Skeet Shoot images. Clearly, this is a very young surface we’re looking at!

  18. Realize now that the linear feature is the far-side of an ice wall which is higher than the ice behind it. The near-side wall is in the foreground. When you view Skeet Shoot #3 in full-resolution, you can see small blocks of ice (perhaps less than 100 meters) casting long shadows. Regards, Ray

  19. If it were me, I’d suspect all those valleys and rifts were caused by interior heating and maybe even a slushy interior ocean. But what do I know, I’m not the scientist. Truly amazing images! I wish we would have had a small fleet of microsatellites on board Cassini (along with Huygens) that could have been lowered down onto worlds such as Enceladus, Phoebe, Hyperiod, Iapetus, or even one of the shepherd satellites like Prometheus (but good luck trying that suicidal maneuver).

    Excellent job guys! If Cassini gets another mission extension, can we have a bunch more close flybys of its moons? Not sure if the orbital dynamics would allow for that, but it sure would be a lot better than the same ol’ same ol’. I like to say “Mix it up a little bit.” Then hey, let’s pull a NEAR Shoemaker and try to soft land Cassini on a moon other than Titan or Enceladus. Is it possible to do some corrections in Cassini’s orbit to cause Saturn’s gravity well to slow it down a bit and perhaps align it with a Moon with a velocity that is most appropriate for such a feat? Maybe it would take several close flybys of Saturn to slow the probe down enough to be able to match its velocity with that of another moon… but then maybe I am wishful thinking here.

    Failing that, what about a high-inclination orbit that avoids the rings enough but skims Saturn’s upper atmosphere so that we can get some awesome data and images before the gravity well inevitably pulls the probe to a point of no return? Of course, apparently there is some concern with Cassini hitting a ring boulder/rock and becoming uncontrollable.

  20. Trying not to gush here… but MAN…
    Navigation… Imaging… Engineering… Planning…
    You guys make it look so easy.
    And the results are incredible.

    I hear and feel your excitement…
    And yes… Thanks for the access to the raw photos…


  21. Indeed great Guidance and Navigation accomplished. Image number 7, according to the chart placing the images on Enceladus, includes two active venting fissures. Flipping the image to rightside up, a whispy area lies at lower-left at the left end of the main fissure in the photo. This lines up with the active vent shown in the chart of the photo frames. Is this some of the venting you hoped to see close up? It seems to me that the adjacent geologic features to the main fissures might reveal the most about the underlying structure of the vents. These fissures might more likely be weak spots in the crust permitting relief of pressure from much deeper within the moon. In contrast, if the outgassing was from a shallower source, one might expect the venting to be more distributed and less defined than the distinct fissures seen in the photos. I’ll look forward to reading and hearing the details once your team analyses and compiles the numerous data sets. Congrats and the best wishes to your continued success!

  22. Hi Matt. The NASA commentator was Al Hibbs. I also recall the live broadcasts from NASA JPL & Ames that were carried by PBS during the Viking, Pioneer 10/11, and Voyager missions. Remembering how rare it was to catch a glimpse of the action back then, I find it’s a real treat now to be able to follow events live on the internet, NASA TV, and other cable channels. (FYI – I had my own brief career as a space journalist; best memory was a long, in-depth interview with Apollo 17 moonwalker Gene Cernan.)

  23. Thank you for enlightening us with new knowledge and for giving us views of another world close up. Wishing you continued success.

  24. Hi,

    Thanks for the pictures, i was waiting since very long time to see them. They are cool and exciting. Thanks once again!!!

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