The pock-marked surface of this spherical chunk of rock looks a lot like images of our own Moon — but in fact, this is much, much further away.
NASA’s Cassini spacecraft buzzed by Saturn’s moon Dione on June 16th, passing just 321 miles from its surface. As it soared through space, it also captured this amazing image of the surface of Dione, revealing its rugged surface. In August, Cassini will pass by Dione again, some 295 miles above it.
Neither of these passes, however, are as close as one made by Cassini back in 2011. Back then, the satellite passed Dione at an altitude of just 60 miles, making palms sweat at Mission Control. At least we have some nice pictures to make up for the stress. [NASA]