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Last updated on April 16, 2014 at 21:24 EDT
Hubble Views Saturn Ring-Plane Crossing
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Hubble Views Saturn Ring-Plane Crossing

March 21, 2003
This sequence of images from NASA's Hubble Space Telescope documents a rare astronomical alignment -- Saturn's magnificent ring system turned edge-on. This occurs when the Earth passes through Saturn's ring plane, as it does approximately every 15 years. These pictures were taken with Hubble's Wide Field Planetary Camera 2 on 22 May 1995, when Saturn was at a distance of 919 million miles (1.5 billion kilometers) from Earth.