The Best of Cassini—13 Years in Orbit Around Saturn

On September 15, 2017, NASA’s Cassini spacecraft will take its final measurements and images as it plunges into Saturn’s atmosphere at 77,000 miles per hour, burning up high above the cloud tops. Launched in 1997, Cassini traveled 2.2 billion miles in seven years to reach Saturn and enter orbit. Over the past 13 years, Cassini’s instruments have returned countless priceless scientific observations and hundreds of thousands of images of the Saturnian system—its atmosphere, its 60+ moons, its vast rings, and much more. Gathered here are 40 of the most amazing images sent to us from Cassini, as we prepare for this epic mission to come to an end in just a few months.

Read more
Hints: View this page full screen. Skip to the next and previous photo by typing j/k or ←/→.

Most Recent

  • Gary Hershorn / Getty

    Photos of the Week: Chicken Offering, Virginia Creeper, Comet Neowise

    Ominous statues in Thailand, solar boats in the Netherlands, the empty streets of Pamplona, a zoo reopening in Ecuador, a nuclear-power plant in France, and much more

  • Kim Kyung-Hoon / Reuters

    Photos: Deadly Flooding in Japan

    Days of unprecedented rainfall have caused rivers to overflow their banks, sweeping away bridges and roads, thereby cutting off many communities.

  • Antonio Masiello / Getty

    The Colorful Blooms of Castelluccio, Italy

    Vast fields of lentils and poppies blooming in central Italy

  • David Clapp / Getty

    New Mexico: Images of the Land of Enchantment

    A few glimpses of New Mexico’s landscape, and some of the animals and people calling it home