Pretty picture: spectacular Saturn and Titan
Posted by Emily Lakdawalla
15-08-2013 8:04 CDT
EDIT: A few hours after I originally posted my version of this photo, Gordan Ugarkovic posted a much better version, so I've replaced my version with his version below. It's amazing how he managed to bring out details in the banding of Saturn's atmosphere.
We're looking at Saturn and Titan from nearly behind. The Sun shines through Titan's atmosphere, making nearly a complete ring around it. This photo doesn't bear too-close scrutiny, because the data for red and green channels was returned to Earth at only half its full resolution. That's why the rings look a little pixelated. But the composition is really stunning. Nice work, Cassini team!
I've received several comments on Twitter about this photo, how "science fiction-y" it looks. That's space exploration for you -- turning science fiction into science fact.