Checked content

File:Two Halves of Titan.png


English: Seasonal changes in the atmosphere of Saturn's largest moon are captured in this natural colour image which shows Titan with a slightly darker top half and a slightly lighter bottom half. Titan's atmosphere has a seasonal hemispheric dichotomy, and this image was taken shortly after Saturn's August 2009 equinox. Images taken using red, green and blue spectral filters were combined to create this natural colour view. Scientists have found that the winter hemisphere typically appears to have more high-altitude haze, making it darker at shorter wavelengths (ultraviolet through blue) and brighter at infra-red wavelengths. The switch between dark and bright occurred over the course of a year or two around the last equinox. Scientists are studying the mechanism responsible for this change, and will monitor the dark-light difference as it flip-flops now that the 2009 equinox has signalled the coming of spring and then summer in the northern hemisphere. Although this hemispheric boundary appears to run directly east-west near the equator, its position is not level with latitude and is actually offset from the equator by about 10 degrees of latitude. This view looks toward the Saturn-facing side of Titan (5150 kilometres across). North on Titan is up. The images were obtained with the Cassini spacecraft wide-angle camera at a distance of approximately 174,000 kilometres from Titan. Image scale is 10 kilometres per pixel.
Deutsch: Titan im sichtbaren Licht; aufgenommen aus einer Entfernung von 174.000 Kilometern (Raumsonde Cassini, 2009).
Date 25 August 2009
Source [ or
Shuttle.svg This image or video was catalogued by Jet Propulsion Lab of the United States National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) under Photo ID: PIA11603.
This tag does not indicate the copyright status of the attached work. A normal copyright tag is still required. See Commons:Licensing for more information.

Author NASA/JPL/Space Science Institute


Public domain This file is in the public domain because it was solely created by NASA. NASA copyright policy states that "NASA material is not protected by copyright unless noted". (See Template:PD-USGov, NASA copyright policy page or JPL Image Use Policy.)
NASA logo.svg
  • Use of NASA logos, insignia and emblems are restricted per US law 14 CFR 1221.
  • The NASA website hosts a large number of images from the Soviet/ Russian space agency, and other non-American space agencies. These are not necessarily in the public domain.
  • Materials based on Hubble Space Telescope data may be copyrighted if they are not explicitly produced by the STScI. See also {{ PD-Hubble}} and {{ Cc-Hubble}}.
  • The SOHO (ESA & NASA) joint project implies that all materials created by its probe are copyrighted and require permission for commercial non-educational use.
  • Images featured on the Astronomy Picture of the Day (APOD) web site may be copyrighted.
The following pages on Schools Wikipedia link to this image (list may be incomplete):

Want to know more?

This selection has made Wikipedia available to all children. SOS Children's Villages believes that a decent childhood is essential to a happy, healthy. Our community work brings families new opportunities through education, healthcare and all manner of support. Have you heard about child sponsorship? Visit our web site to find out.