Titanic Smog

Looking back toward the sun brings out the thin haze that hovers 500 kilometers (310 miles) above Saturn’s moon Titan.

The haze is composed of small particles whose diameter is comparable to the wavelength of light, which is ultraviolet light centered at 338 nanometers. Particles of this scale scatter sunlight most effectively in the direction opposite to the direction of sunlight. Scientists are still trying to understand what processes produce this thin, high-altitude haze layer.

North on Titan is up and tilted 10 degrees to the right. Titan is 5,150 kilometers (3,200 miles) across.

This image was taken with the Cassini spacecraft narrow-angle camera on Sept. 24, 2005, at a distance of approximately 917,000 kilometers (570,000 miles) from Titan and at a Sun-Titan-spacecraft, or phase, angle of 145 degrees. Image scale is 5 kilometers (3 miles) per pixel.


Related Web Pages

Rendezvous with Titan
Huygens, Phone Home
Saturn– JPL Cassini Main Page
Space Science Institute
Planet Wannabe
Where is Cassini Now?
Did Fluid Once Flow on Titan?
Is Titan’s Bright Spot Hot?
Titan’s Icy Volcanoes Erupting Methane?
Titan versus Earth