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originally posted by: wildespace
I'd like to point out that the published image is, besides being false-colour, is very enhanced. I've gone to the raw Cassini images archive and made a direct stack of the infrared/green/UV frames of part of the area seen in the published image. The result was almost colourless (with just a bit of yellowish hue). Here's the image with saturation cranked up:
You can just about make out the red lines. (The red fringe around the edge of Tethys is due to images not aligning perfectly, so ignore it)
But the red colour that appears in both mine and NASA's image is really infrared colour. The moon's surface is fairly uniform in visible colours: saturn.jpl.nasa.gov...
My theory about the origin of those (infra)red lines is that a few loose chunks of matter that orbits Saturn impacted the moon at a very shallow angle, leaving those streaks. The chunks were rich in tholins,complex hydrocarbons that have a reddish hue, which partially cover some other saturnian moons and the rings.