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Saturn's Moon Tethys Look Like an Eyeball in NASA's Stunning New Image

Jan 25, 2017 11:42 AM EST
FILE PHOTO - Cassini Spacecraft Prepares To Enter Saturn's Orbit
NASA's Cassini mission captured a detailed image of Saturn's moon Tethys showing its impact craters. The impact craters made the moon look like an eyeball from afar.
(Photo : NASA via Getty Images)

NASA's Cassini spacecraft photographed another one of Saturn's satellite during a recent flyby. Not only does the image possesses unprecedented detail of the little-known moon, the moon itself called Tethy's looks like a giant eyeball.

Tethys', a bigger icy moon initially looks like an eyeball at first glance. The resemblance could be attributed to the crater called Odysseus on the surface of the moon.

The crater has complex peaks that make it prominent on the surface of Tethys. The moon is about 660 miles (1,062 kilometers across) evidently suffered from impacts that resulted to the craters.

All the marks on the surface are due to impacts since the moon in not tectonically active. The Odysseus crater is not simply created by one impact. "In this case, a large impact not only created a crater known as Odysseus, but the rebound of the impact caused the mountainous peaks, named Scheria Montes, to form in the center of the crater," a NASA official said in a press release.

Cassini used its narrow-angle camera to capture the image of the moon. The image was taken in green light last Nov. 10. The spacecraft was about 228,000 miles (367,000 kilometers) away from Tethys when the image was taken. The clear details are due to the resolution and image scale at 1.2 miles (2 kilometers) per pixel.

The Cassini spacecraft also photographed Saturn's moon Daphnis during its recent flyby. The spacecraft is currently doing ring-grazing dives in between the rings of the planet in order to capture never-before-seen images of Saturn, its rings and its lesser-seen moons and moonlets.

The ring-grazing gave scientists a new perspective on the planet's hidden moons. There ringed planet has more than 60 moons, according to CNETThe phenomena where foreign objects found in space were compared to the likeness of common things is called pareidolia.

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