Above Titan's South
September 17, 2012
The vortex, which is a mass of gas swirling around the south pole high in the moon's atmosphere, can be seen in the lower right of this view. See Titan's Colorful South Polar Vortex and Titan's South Polar Vortex in Motion to learn more. The moon's northern hood is also visible in the top left of this view. See Haze Layers on Titan and Above Titan's North to learn more about the hood.
This view looks toward the leading hemisphere of Titan (3,200 miles, or 5,150 kilometers across). North on Titan is up and rotated 25 degrees to the left.
The image was taken with the Cassini spacecraft narrow-angle camera on July 6, 2012 using a spectral filter sensitive to wavelengths of near-infrared light centered at 889 nanometers. The view was acquired at a distance of approximately 1.7 million miles (2.8 million kilometers) from Titan and at a Sun-Titan-spacecraft, or phase, angle of 86 degrees. Scale in the original image was 11 miles (17 kilometers) per pixel. The image was contrast enhanced and magnified by a factor of 1.5 to enhance the visibility of surface features.
The Cassini-Huygens mission is a cooperative project of NASA, the European Space Agency and the Italian Space Agency. The Jet Propulsion Laboratory, a division of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, manages the mission for NASA's Science Mission Directorate in Washington. The Cassini orbiter and its two onboard cameras were designed, developed and assembled at JPL. The imaging team is based at the Space Science Institute, Boulder, Colo.
Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Space Science Institute