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Mystery Photo

What in the world is it?

Mystery Photo

Don’t peek at the answer until you’ve given this a good try! Then, scroll down a bit and the truth will be revealed to you.


What in the world is it?

Yes, it is a NASA image of the surface of some solar-system body. But just what are you seeing? And where was it taken?

Well, you’re looking at a “Black Cat” on Saturn’s largest moon, Titan! This radar image was taken on October 26, 2004 when the Cassini spacecraft was about 1,600 kilometers (994 miles) above the surface of that cloud-enshrouded world — thus the need for cloud-penetrating radar, which bounces off the surface of the planet and back to the spacecraft. Scientists can then take the data and construct a visible image.

The bright regions in the image are believed to be rough terrain while the dark areas are smoother areas, and quite possibly are liquid!

Now take some time to relax your gaze as you look at the dark regions. Do you see the black cat? Actually, the Cassini team nicknamed it “Si-Si the Cat.” Why? Because one of the team member’s daughter, Si-Si, pointed out the “cat” to them.

The image is about 250 kilometers (155 miles) wide by 478 kilometers (297 miles) long. The smallest details seen on the image vary from about 300 meters (984 feet) to 1 kilometer (.62 mile).

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