May 27, 2010
In this stunning image, the Cassini spacecraft looks at the dark side of Saturn's largest moon. The narrowing circle of light surrounding Titan is produced by sunlight scattering through Titan's atmosphere.
A detached, high-altitude global haze layer encircles Titan (5,150 kilometers, or 3,200 miles across). See Titan's Halo to learn more. North on Titan is up and rotated 10 degrees to the right.
The image was taken with the Cassini spacecraft narrow-angle camera on March 16, 2010 using a spectral filter sensitive to wavelengths of ultraviolet light centered at 338 nanometers. The view was obtained at a distance of approximately 1.9 million kilometers (1.2 million miles) from Titan and at a Sun-Titan-spacecraft, or phase, angle of 158 degrees. Image scale is 11 kilometers (7 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