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Titan Flyby (T-96): Peering at the North

Titan Flyby (T-96): Peering at the North

Dec. 01, 2013

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Senkyo Through the Clouds
  The Cassini spacecraft once again dons its special infrared glasses to peer through Titan's haze and monitor its surface. Here, Cassini has recaptured the equatorial region dubbed 'Senkyo.' The dark features are believed to be vast dunes of hydrocarbon particles that precipitated out of Titan's atmosphere. Image released Oct. 28, 2013.
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T-96: Peering at the North

During the inbound wing of this close Titan flyby, the visible and infrared mapping spectrometer (VIMS) instrument rode along with the Imaging Science Subsystem (ISS) to acquire a medium-resolution mosaic of high northern latitudes, including Titan's leading hemisphere, which had not yet been well observed. It also looked for clouds over the North Pole to monitor the evolution of the cloud system as Titan approaches summer solstice. VIMS also looked for specular reflection in an area located to the east of Ara Fluctus, between latitudes 53 N and 48 N and between longitudes 130 W – 163 W.

During closest approach VIMS first acquiree a high resolution map of the northern seas and lakes. It then acquired a high-resolution swath over terrain from high northern latitudes to the equator along the western edge of Xanadu. Then, at the end of its prime observation, VIMS stared at Ontario Lacus (72.5 S, 182.5 W), which was on the terminator. VIMS then rode along with CIRS and UVIS to image Titan’s southern hemisphere. It also looked at clouds to follow the evolution of the cloud system over the south pole.

Titan Flyby at a Glance
Dec. 1, 2013 [SCET]

870 miles (1,400 kilometers)

13,000 mph (5.9 km/sec)


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