Astronomy Picture of the Day

Tantalizing Titan

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#55394 by @ 29.10.2004 00:15 - nach oben -
Tantalizing Titan


Normally hidden by a thick, hazy atmosphere,
tantalizing features on Titan's surface appear in
false-color view

The image was recorded as the Cassini spacecraft approached its
close flyby
of Saturn's
smog-shrouded moon
on October 26.

Here, red and green colors represent specific infrared wavelengths
absorbed by Titan's atmospheric methane while
bright and dark surface areas are revealed in a more penetrating
infrared band.

Ultraviolet data showing the extensive upper atmosphere and
haze layers is seen as blue.

Sprawling across the 5,000 kilometer wide moon, the bright
continent-sized feature known as
Xanadu is near
picture center, bordered at the left by contrasting dark

Saturn orbiter
Cassini and
lander Huygens plan
, but for now the origin and nature of Titan's surface
features remain unknown.

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