NASA Cassini mission, Saturn
An image of Daphnis moon captured by NASA's Cassini spacecraft.NASA / JPL-Caltech / Space Science Institute.

NASA's Cassini mission was launched in 2004 and it captured some amazing pictures of the Saturnian system. Now, the spacecraft has snapped S/2005 S1 or Daphnis, Saturn's wavemaker moon. This is one of the closest image of the moon taken so far in visible light on January 16, 2017, at a distance of 28,000 km (17,000 miles) using its narrow-angle camera while the Cassini was roaming the outer edges of Saturn's ring.

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The moon has a diameter of around 8km (5 miles) and it orbits within 42 km (26 mile) wide off Keeler Gap's A ring -- the outermost of the Saturn's bright rings.

The Daphni moon completes one orbit in 14 hours, covering a distance of 136,500 km (85,000 miles). Waves are created in horizontal and vertical directions in the edges of the gap because of the gravitational pull of the moon. These waves were first detected by Cassini around the time of Saturn's equinox in 2009.

The wave peak present in the gap edge at the left appears to be mellowed in contrast to the usually sharp edges of the Keeler Gap. This could be a result of the motion of the fine ring particles, which escalate into the gap while Daphni's previous proximate approach that edge while orbiting.

Similar to the gas-gaint planet's other small ring moons like Pan and Atlas, Daphnis seems to possess a narrow ridge around its equator. Its surface appears to have a smooth mantle, which could possibly be a collection of fine particles that emerged from the planet's rings.

Another ridge can be observed on the north of the moon which is parallel to the equatorial band. A few craters and other finer details can be observed in the image. The image even portrays a faint trace of the ring's particles following the little moon. This trail of particle might be spreading itself out because the moon might have drawn some of them from the ring.