Feeds

New Cassini pics of Saturnian 'Ice Queen' Helene

Moon face that launched rather fewer than a thousand ships

Intelligent flash storage arrays

Pics NASA has released new pictures taken by the space probe Cassini in orbit around Saturn, ringed titan of the Outer System. The pictures show the small trojan ice moon Helene in close up.

Ice moon Helene imaged by the Cassini probe on June 18, 2011. Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Space Science Institute

Interesting, but not enough to get more than a few spaceships launched so far.

This is the second close pass Cassini has made past Helene, and new views were gained as this time the Saturn-facing side of the icy moon was illuminated by direct sunlight rather than merely Saturn-light as was the case last time.

Ice moon Helene imaged by the Cassini probe on June 18, 2011. Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Space Science Institute

Would fit roughly into Rutland.

The small, irregularly shaped moon was named Helene after Helen of Troy, which is appropriate mythologically as the legendary beauty whose face launched a thousand ships against her lover's city was supposedly a granddaughter of the titan Cronus (Saturn, to the Romans). NASA's description of Helene this week as an "Ice Queen" is thus perhaps fair enough.

The name is probably a good one in astronomical terms too as Helene is a trojan moon rather than a regular one, sharing an orbit with the larger moon Dione but 60 degrees ahead in Dione's leading trojan point. Helene herself is just 20 miles across, very roughly the size of Rutland, say.

At its closest point of approach three days ago, Cassini passed within 4,330 miles of the diminutive moonlet. There are more images to be seen here courtesy of NASA. ®

Security for virtualized datacentres

More from The Register

next story
Boffins who stare at goats: I do believe they’re SHRINKING
Alpine chamois being squashed by global warming
Comet Siding Spring revealed as flying molehill
Hiding from this space pimple isn't going to do humanity's reputation any good
Experts brand LOHAN's squeaky-clean box
Phytosanitary treatment renders Vulture 2 crate fit for export
LONG ARM of the SAUR: Brachially gifted dino bone conundrum solved
Deinocheirus mirificus was a bit of a knuckle dragger
MARS NEEDS WOMEN, claims NASA pseudo 'naut: They eat less
'Some might find this idea offensive' boffin admits
No sail: NASA spikes Sunjammer
'Solar sail' demonstrator project binned
Carry On Cosmonaut: Willful Child is a poor taste Star Trek parody
Cringeworthy, crude and crass jokes abound in Steven Erikson’s sci-fi debut
prev story

Whitepapers

Choosing cloud Backup services
Demystify how you can address your data protection needs in your small- to medium-sized business and select the best online backup service to meet your needs.
Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.