Saturn Moons In Ghostly Specter

March 8, 2006
Saturn Moons In Ghostly Specter
Image Credit: NASA/JPL/Space Science Institute

Ghostly details make this dark scene more than just a beautiful grouping of two Saturn moons, with Tethys on the left and Titan on the right.

In Titan's thick and inflated atmosphere, the detached high haze layer can be seen, as well as the complex northern polar hood (at the top). Images like this one can help scientists make definitive estimates of the altitudes to which the high haze extends.

The faint vertical banded pattern is a type of noise that usually is removed during image processing. Because this image was processed to enhance the visibility of details in Titan's atmosphere and the faint G ring, the vertical noise was also enhanced.

Titan is Saturn's largest moon, at 5,150 kilometers (3,200 miles) across. Tethys is 1,071 kilometers (665 miles) across. This view was obtained in visible light with the Cassini spacecraft narrow-angle camera on Jan. 19, 2006, at a distance of approximately 2.4 million kilometers (1.5 million miles) from Titan and 1 million kilometers (600,000 miles) from Tethys. The image scale is 14 kilometers (9 miles) per pixel on Titan and 6 kilometers (4 miles) per pixel on Tethys.

Copyright 2006 by Space Daily, Distributed United Press International

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