The Cassini spacecraft looks toward the dark side of Titan as a circle of light is produced by sunlight scattering through the periphery of the atmosphere of Saturn's largest moon.
A detached, high-altitude global haze layer encircles the moon. See Titan's Halo to learn more. This view looks toward the leading hemisphere of Titan (5,150 kilometers, or 3,200 miles across). North on Titan is up and rotated 32 degrees to the right.
The image was taken with the Cassini spacecraft narrow-angle camera on Aug. 7, 2009 using a spectral filter sensitive to wavelengths of near-infrared light centered at 619 nanometers. The view was obtained at a distance of approximately 1.2 million kilometers (746,000 miles) from Titan and at a Sun-Titan-spacecraft, or phase, angle of 160 degrees. Image scale is 7 kilometers (4 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