Saturn’s satellite Dione is less than half the size of our moon, and it orbits a planet which features a radius nine times that of Earth. It’s a stark contrast in size that’s beautifully conveyed in a picture recently captured by the Cassini space probe.

This gorgeous image was taken by Cassini at a distance of 618,000 miles (994,000 kilometers) from Saturn on May 27, 2015.

Saturn appears hazy compared to Dione owing to the image being acquired via a wavelength absorbed by methane. Dione, unlike Saturn, does not experience methane absorption, so the light simply bounces off its icy surface.

[ NASA ]


Email the author at george@io9.com and follow him at @dvorsky. Top image by NASA/JPL-Caltech/Space Science Institute