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A tropical haze band in Titan's stratosphere

R. de Kok, P. G. J. Irwin, N. A. Teanby, S. Vinatier, F. Tosi, A. Negr„o, S. Osprey, A. Adriani, M. L. Moriconi, A. Coradini

Abstract
Inspection of near-infrared images from Cassini's Imaging Science Subsystem and Visual and Infrared Mapping Spectrometer have revealed a new feature in Titan's haze structure: a narrow band of increased scattering by haze south of the equator. The band seems to indicate a region of very limited mixing in the lower stratosphere, which causes haze particles to be trapped there. This could explain the sharp separation between the two hemispheres, known as the north-south asymmetry, seen in images. The separation of the two hemispheres can also be seen in the stratosphere above 150 km using infrared spectra measured by Cassini's Composite Infrared Spectrometer. Titan's behaviour in the lower tropical stratosphere is remarkably similar to that of the Earth's tropical stratosphere, which hints at possible common dynamical processes.

Keywords
Atmospheres -Composition -Infrared: observations

Icarus
Volume 207, Number 1, Page 485
2010 May

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Instituto de Astrof√≠sica e Ci√™ncias do Espa√ßo Universidade do Porto Faculdade de Ciências da Universidade de Lisboa
Fundação para a Ciência e a Tecnologia COMPETE 2020 PORTUGAL 2020 União Europeia