Sunday, January 8, 2012

APOD 2.7

January 5, 2012: Ringside with Titan and Dione
See Explanation.  Clicking on the picture will download
 the highest resolution version available.
     Titan and Dione are two of fifty-three Saturnian moons that orbit the planet in the plane of it's rings.  The above picture, captured by the Cassini spacecraft, features the two moons and Saturn's rings visibly in the background.  Titan is the largest moon of Saturn (with a radius of 2,575 kilometers) and is the second largest moon in our solar system, only smaller than Jupiter's Ganymede.  Dione is the third largest moon of Saturn and has a diameter of 1,123 kilometers.  Titan is 2.3 million kilometers from the Cassini spacecraft and Dione is 3.2 million kilometers.  The moons are much farther from the spacecraft than they are from the gas giant.

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