Iapetus of Saturn

Cassini orbiter took this picture of Iapetus, the distant moon of Saturn
Cassini orbiter took this picture of Iapetus, the distant moon of Saturn

Iapetus is an interesting satellite of Saturn in that it has both a light side and a dark side – a yin and yang. Italian mathematician, astronomer, engineer, and astrologer Giovanni Cassini was first to observe the dark-light difference when he discovered Iapetus in 1671. So it is fitting that this picture was taken by the space exploration mission partly named after him (Cassini-Huygens). The narrow angle camera on the Cassini orbiter took this photograph of Iapetus from a distance of approximately 4 million kilometers.

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