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Titan's complex atmosphere

Titan's complex atmosphere


Date: 01 March 2006
Satellite: Cassini
Depicts: Titan
Copyright: NASA/JPL/Space Science Institute

This natural colour image shows Titan's upper atmosphere - an active place where methane molecules are being broken apart by solar ultraviolet light and the by-products combine to form compounds like ethane and acetylene.

Lower down in the atmosphere, the haze turns into a globe-enshrouding smog of complex organic molecules. This thick, orange-coloured haze absorbs visible sunlight, allowing only perhaps 10 percent of the light to reach the surface.

This image was taken with the NASA/ESA/ASI Cassini spacecraft wide-angle camera using red, green and blue spectral filters, which were combined to create this natural colour view.

The images were obtained at a distance of approximately 9500 kilometres from Titan on 31 March 2005. The image scale is approximately 400 metres per pixel.

Last Update: 1 September 2019
11-Jul-2020 06:09 UT

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