New views of Saturn's moon Iapetus accompany papers that detail how reddish dust swept up on the moon's orbit around Saturn and migrating ice can explain the bizarre, yin-yang-patterned surface.
The papers, led by Cassini scientists Tilmann Denk and John Spencer, appeared online in the journal Science on Dec. 10, 2009.
The new image in the left-hand panel of PIA11690 shows the most nearly complete view to date of Iapetus' charcoal-dark leading hemisphere. The right-hand panel, which had been released previously, shows the trailing hemisphere, where wide swaths are covered by bright ice. The new three-panel image PIA11689 uses false-color views in increasing levels of contrast to reveal the reddish dust that overlays the bright-dark pattern. Minimal enhancement was applied to the left panel, with increasing contrast added to the middle and right-hand images.
For more information, see http://www.swri.org/9what/releases/2009/Iapetus.htm.