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As NASA's Cassini spacecraft sped away from Titan following a relatively close flyby, its cameras monitored the moon's northern polar region, capturing signs of renewed cloud activity.
Cassini scientists noted a decrease in clouds everywhere on Titan after a large storm in 2010, and expected clouds to return sooner, based on computer models of Titan's atmosphere. Continued monitoring should help them determine if the clouds' appearance signals the beginning of summer weather patterns, or if it is an isolated occurrence.
A streak of methane clouds are seen here, near center, over the large methane sea known as Ligeia Mare. A movie sequence, PIA18420, shows these clouds in motion over a two-day period.
An image taken on July 21, 2014 using the Cassini spacecraft's narrow-angle camera was reprojected to create this orthogonal view.
An unannotated view is also provided here.
The Cassini Solstice Mission is a joint United States and European endeavor. The Jet Propulsion Laboratory, 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 imaging team consists of scientists from the US, England, France, and Germany. The imaging operations center and team lead (Dr. C. Porco) are based at the Space Science Institute in Boulder, Colo.