Tuesday, July 26, 2005

New Enceladus Image: Craters and Cracks

CICLOPS has released this view of Enceladus show heavily modified craters and fractures along the northern edge of the South Polar tectonic region. This is the highest resolution image taken before the UVIS occultation ride-along image. Near the top of the image, numerous craters can be observed, most covered in tectonic fractures and cracks. Such morphology has been observed throughout this region of Enceladus, suggesting intense stresses following the initial formation of the south polar terrain. Also note the relative lack of rough terrain in the cratered region (outside of the thin fractures), quite different from the region of large boulders seen in the highest resolution images, also released today. In the lower part of the image, relatively few craters are seen and all are much less than a kilometer across.

This image has a resolution of 67 meters per pixel and was taken from a distance of 11,500 km.


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