Astronomy Picture of the Day
October 14, 2012


NASA/JPL-Caltech/Space Science Institute - Credits for the additional process. and color.: Dr Paolo C. Fienga/Lunar Explorer Italia/IPF

In today's APOD, we decided to offer you a very interesting and well detailed image, taken by the NASA - Cassini Spacecraft, showing the Northern Portion of the huge Odysseus Crater which, as you know, is located on the Saturnian moon Tethys. As you can see, this imposing Impact Crater - whose diameter is approx 450 Kilometers - or about 280 Miles across - dominates the entire left half of this view of Tethys (which, on its side, is approx. 660 Miles, or about 1062 Kilometers across).

Plunging Cliffs and towering Mountains characterize this gigantic Impact Structure, and also quite a few small Impact Craters can be sen inside Odysseus itself, making it clear that it is not a very young structure. However, if you make a comparison between the Cratering Density of the interior of Odysseus and the Crater Density of the surrounding Terrains, you will realize that this impressive Basin is (better yet: it appears to be), in any case, "younger" than the rest of the Surface of Tethys. Odysseus lies on the Leading Hemisphere of Tethys and this view is centered on Terrain located at approx. 49° North latitude and 111° West Longitude.

The image was obtained in Visible Light, with the NASA - Cassini Spacecraft Narrow-Angle Camera on June 28, 2012, and at a distance of approximately 45.000 Miles (such as about 72.000 Kilometers) from Tethys, at a Sun-Tethys-Spacecraft, or Phase, Angle of 64°. Image scale is roughly 1409 feet (such as about 430 meters) per pixel.

This frame (which is an Original NASA - Cassini Spacecraft image published on the NASA - Planetary Photojournal with the ID n. PIA 14622) has been additionally processed and then colorized, according to an informed speculation carried out by Dr Paolo C. Fienga (LXTT-IPF), in Absolute Natural Colors (such as the colors that a human eye would actually perceive if someone were onboard the NASA - Cassini Spacecraft and then looked outside, towards the Surface of the Saturnian moon Tethys), by using an original technique created - and, in time, dramatically improved - by the Lunar Explorer Italia Team. Different colors, as well as different shades of the same color, mean, among others, the existence of different Elements present on the Surface of Tehys, each having a different Albedo (---> Reflectivity) and Chemical Composition.

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