CICLOPS: Cassini Imaging Central Laboratory for OPerationS
Titan's Waves?

Titan's Waves?
PIA 06182

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  Multiple upper stratospheric haze layers are evident in this ultraviolet view looking toward Titan's south pole. The alternating bright and dark bands may be due to differing haze concentrations produced by what may be gravity wave motions (the atmospheric equivalent of ripples on a pond), or perhaps they are evidence of shadows cast by haze layers moving upward as waves in the atmosphere pass by. East-west undulations suggestive of other wave motions are also visible in these layers.

The image was taken with the narrow angle camera on February 14, 2005 through a filter sensitive to wavelengths of polarized ultraviolet light centered at 338 nanometers. The image was acquired from a distance of approximately 151,000 kilometers (94,000 miles) from Titan and at a Sun-Titan-spacecraft, or phase, angle of 20 degrees. Resolution in the image is about 900 meters (3,000 feet) 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 Cassini-Huygens mission for NASA's Science Mission Directorate, Washington, D.C. The imaging team consists of scientists from the US, England, France, and Germany. The imaging operations center and team lead (Dr. C. Porco) are based at the Space Science Institute in Boulder, Colo.

For more information about the Cassini-Huygens mission, visit and the Cassini imaging team home page,

Credit: NASA/JPL/Space Science Institute
Released: February 24, 2005 (PIA 06182)
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