August 18, 2006
This remarkably clear view from that flyby shows the moon's characteristically dark mid-latitudes, and more southern terrain than the Cassini spacecraft has usually been able to glimpse.
This was the first in a series of "illuminated outbound flybys" of Titan (5,150 kilometers, or 3,200 miles across) where the illuminated hemisphere was visible following the closest approach. Cassini's flyby of Titan on July 22, 2006 sent the spacecraft into a more inclined orbit about Saturn.
The image was taken in polarized infrared light with the Cassini spacecraft wide-angle camera on July 22, 2006 at a distance of approximately 148,000 kilometers (92,000 miles) from Titan. Image scale is 9 kilometers (5 miles) per pixel.
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 and its two onboard cameras were designed, developed and assembled at JPL. The imaging operations center is based at the Space Science Institute in Boulder, Colo.
Credit: NASA/JPL/Space Science Institute