Titan -- A Moon With An Atmosphere
|Titan, once thought to be the
largest moon in the solar system, turned out to be slightly smaller
than Ganymede when photographed by Voyager 1. The surface of Titan is
obscured by a dense atmosphere of nitrogen and methane, which made the
moon appear larger in telescopic observations.
Although the atmosphere looks featureless when photographed from afar, some banding was detected in specially processed Voyager 1 images.
|A color-enhanced image from Voyager 1 shows high altitude haze layers that occur 500 kilometers (310 miles) above the main cloud layer of Titan. Below the orange cloud layer, clouds of methane may rain onto the surface. The surface of Titan could even have "oceans" of liquid hydrocarbons.||
140k GIF - 31k JPEG
NASA Press Release #P23108
|Bands in the northern hemisphere and equatorial regions of Titan as seen by Voyager 2.|
|Voyager results indicate that Titan is more like Earth than any of the planets. The abundance of carbon components may make Titan a natural laboratory to study the most primitive organic chemical reactions that were present on Earth some 4 billion years ago.|
Saturn Facts || View
From Earth || Pioneer at Saturn || Voyager at Saturn
Rings || Atmosphere || Magnetic Field || Moons of Saturn || Future Exploration
©2002 National Air and Space Museum