Taking the Temperature of a Saturn Storm
Measurements by NASA's Cassini spacecraft reveal temperatures in a high layer of Saturn's atmosphere known as the stratosphere and show the dramatic effects of the massive storm deep below. In these data from Cassini's composite infrared spectrometer, red indicates warm temperatures in the storm region (20 to 40 degrees latitude). They shine like stratospheric "beacons" that flank the disturbance. Blue indicates cold temperatures over the central region of the storm. These temperatures were measured at a wavelength of 7.7 microns.
The Cassini-Huygens mission is a cooperative project of NASA, the European Space Agency and the Italian Space Agency. NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif., a division of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, manages the mission for NASA's Science Mission Directorate, Washington, D.C. The Cassini orbiter was designed, developed and assembled at JPL. The composite infrared spectrometer team is based at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md., where the instrument was built.
For more information about the Cassini-Huygens mission, visit http://www.nasa.gov/cassini and http://saturn.jpl.nasa.gov/home/index.cfm.
Image credit: NASA/JPL/GSFC/Univ. Oxford