On Titan's Xanadu region

Robert H. Brown, Jason W. Barnes, H. Jay Melosh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


A large, circular marking ∼1800 km across is seen in near-infrared images of Titan. The feature is centered at 10°S, 120°W on Titan, encompasses much of Titan's western Xanadu region, and has an off-center, quasi-circular, inner margin about 700 km across, with lobate outer margins extending 200-500 km from the inner margin. On the feature's southern flank is Tui Regio, an area that has very high reflectivity at 5. μm, and is hypothesized to exhibit geologically recent cryovolcanic flows (Barnes, J.W. et al. [2006]. Geophys. Res. Lett. 33), similar to flows seen in Hotei Regio, a cryovolcanic area whose morphology may be controlled by pre-existing, crustal fractures resulting from an ancient impact (Soderblom, L.A. et al. [2009]. Icarus, 204). The spectral reflectivity of the large, circular feature is quite different than that of its surroundings, making it compositionally distinct, and radar measurements of its topography, brightness temperature and volume scattering also suggest that the feature is quite distinct from its surroundings. These and several other lines of evidence, in addition to the feature's morphology, suggest that it may occupy the site of an ancient impact.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)556-560
Number of pages5
Issue number2
StatePublished - Aug 2011
Externally publishedYes


  • Cratering
  • Titan, surface

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


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