Astronomy Picture of the Day



Titan's Odd Spot

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#74066 by @ 28.05.2005 00:00 - nach oben -
Titan's Odd Spot


Explanation:

Titan's odd spot
could be a cloud, but if so, it's a persistent one.

Peering into the thick, hazy atmosphere of
Saturn's largest moon,
cameras on board the Cassini spacecraft found
a bright spot
at the same location during Titan encounters in 2005 and 2004.

Seen near Titan's upper edge in
this
false-color image
from the
VIMS
instrument
,
the spot is almost 500 kilometers wide, and is brightest
at infrared wavelengths.

In addition to suggesting the uniquely colored spot is a
persistent cloud possibly controlled by surface features,
researchers also entertain the idea that the spot is caused
by unusual surface material or extremely tall
mountains.

They also note the bright
infrared spot
could be hot.

Further clues to the odd spot's
nature will come during a
planned encounter in July 2006
when Cassini's cameras will look at the spot during
Titan's
night
.

If it glows at night, it's hot.




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