July 19, 2006
This image of Titan was acquired on April 30, 2006, by Cassini's radar instrument in synthetic-aperture mode over the continent-sized region called Xanadu.
Xanadu is one of the brightest areas on Titan, measuring about 4,000 kilometers (2,485 miles) east to west and 2,000 kilometers (1,243 miles) north to south. The radar coverage shown ranges from 220 to 490 kilometers (140 to 300 miles) from top to bottom, and is about 4,850 kilometers (3,013 miles) wide. Smallest details in this image are about 400 meters (1,310 feet) across.
On Xanadu, most of the geologic forces that modify Earth's surface can be found. Channels are seen crossing through plains and meandering through bright, hilly country. Chains of taller mountains appear in Xanadu's interior. Dunes traverse darker areas to the west of Xanadu itself. Circular features might have been formed by the impact of an asteroid or by cryovolcanism. More channels carve through the eastern (right) margin, ending on a dark plain where the dunes abundant elsewhere seem absent.
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, Washington, D.C. The Cassini orbiter was designed, developed and assembled at JPL. The radar instrument was built by JPL and the Italian Space Agency, working with team members from the United States and several European countries.
For more information about the Cassini-Huygens mission visit http://saturn.jpl.nasa.gov .