Saturn's surface is painted with swirls and shadows. Each swirl here
is a weather system, reminding us of how dynamic Saturn's atmosphere is.
Images taken in the near-infrared (like this one) permit us to peer
through Saturn's methane haze layer to the clouds below. Scientists
track the clouds and weather systems in the hopes of better
understanding Saturn's complex atmosphere - and thus Earth's as well.
This view looks toward the sunlit side of the rings from about 17
degrees above the ringplane. The image was taken with the Cassini
spacecraft wide-angle camera on Feb. 8, 2015 using a spectral filter
which preferentially admits wavelengths of near-infrared light centered
at 752 nanometers.
The view was obtained at a distance of approximately 794,000 miles
(1.3 million kilometers) from Saturn. Image scale is 47 miles (76
kilometers) per pixel.
Image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Space Science Institute