CICLOPS: Cassini Imaging Central Laboratory for OPerationS
Ring of Light

Dazzling Titan glows with a 360-degree sunset as light scatters through its very extended atmosphere. Some structure is visible in the hazes of the northern polar hood.

To the left is Janus (179 kilometers, 111 miles across), far off on the opposite side of the ringplane. The rings show their unlit side to Cassini, as the spacecraft viewed them from slightly above the ringplane.

A world with strikingly Earth-like physical processes, frigid Titan is Saturn's largest natural satellite, at 5,150 kilometers (3,200 miles) across. Titan's image is saturated at the 5 o'clock position.

The view was acquired in visible light with the Cassini spacecraft narrow-angle camera on June 2, 2006 at a distance of approximately 2.3 million kilometers (1.5 million miles) from Titan and at a Sun-Titan-spacecraft, or phase, angle of 163 degrees. Cassini was 3.7 million kilometers (2.3 million miles) from Janus. Image scale is 14 kilometers (9 miles) per pixel on Titan and 22 kilometers (14 miles) on Janus.

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: June 30, 2006 (PIA 08211)
Image/Caption Information
  Ring of Light
PIA 08211

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Alliance Member Comments
Moonsister (Apr 20, 2007 at 11:07 PM):
Titan as a ring, on Saturn's rings, how novel, how cool, how different.