After Hours

Astronomy uber-photo: In the Shadow of Saturn

This spectacular photo of Saturn was taken by the Cassini-Huygens spaceprobe when it entered Saturn's solar shadow, meaning the planet stood directly between the camera and the sun. You're getting the equivalent of the "diamond ring" effect that can be seen on earth during total solar eclipses.

Found via Digg: Astronomy Picture of the Day: 2006 October 16 - In the Shadow of Saturn.

Saturnian eclipse This spectacular false-color photo was taken by the Cassini-Huygens spaceprobe when it entered Saturn's solar shadow, meaning the planet stood directly between the camera and the sun. You're getting the equivalent of the "diamond ring" effect that can be seen on earth during total solar eclipses, only in this case, there are actual rings involved. The reason the "dark" side of Saturn looks illuminated is that the planet's rings are reflecting sunlight back at it.

About Jay Garmon

Jay Garmon has a vast and terrifying knowledge of all things obscure, obtuse, and irrelevant. One day, he hopes to write science fiction, but for now he'll settle for something stranger — amusing and abusing IT pros. Read his full profile. You can a...

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