PIA19047: Bright Feature Appears in Titan's Kraken Mare

Bright Feature Appears in Titan’s Kraken Mare


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Two Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) images from the radar experiment on NASA's Cassini spacecraft show that, between May 2013 and August 2014, a bright feature appeared in Kraken Mare, the largest hydrocarbon sea on Saturn's moon Titan. Researchers think the bright feature is likely representative of something on the hydrocarbon sea's surface, such as waves or floating debris.

A similar feature appeared in Ligea Mare, another Titan sea, and was seen to evolve in appearance between 2013 and 2014 (see PIA18430).

The image at left was taken on May 23, 2013 at an incidence angle of 56 degrees; the image at right was taken on August 21, 2014 at an incidence angle of 5 degrees. Incidence angle refers to the angle at which the radar beam strikes the surface.

Background Info:

The Cassini-Huygens mission is a cooperative project of NASA, the European Space Agency and the Italian Space Agency. NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, a division of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, manages the mission for NASA's Science Mission Directorate, Washington, DC. The Cassini orbiter was designed, developed and assembled at JPL. The radar instrument was built by JPL and the Italian Space Agency, working with team members from the United States and several European countries.

For more information about the Cassini-Huygens mission visit http://saturn.jpl.nasa.gov and http://www.nasa.gov/cassini .

Cataloging Keywords:

Name Value Additional Values
Target Titan
System Saturn
Target Type Satellite
Mission Cassini-Huygens
Instrument Host Cassini Orbiter
Host Type Orbiter
Instrument Radar Mapper
Extra Keywords Grayscale, Radar
Acquisition Date
Release Date 2014-11-10
Date in Caption 2013-05-23 2014-08-21
Image Credit NASA/JPL-Caltech/ASI/Cornell
Source photojournal.jpl.nasa.gov/catalog/PIA19047
Identifier PIA19047