Titan appeared in new Cassini images

Titan appeared in new Cassini images

Recently, NASA published a new image of Saturn’s largest satellite, Titan. It was created from several photographs, combined into a single whole, by the Cassini apparatus, which usually demonstrates the lunar surface to the scientists in a fog.

The relief of the satellite is very similar to that of Saturn, especially on the side of Titan facing us. In particular, this is indicated by the large dark dunes in the region of the Fensal region in the north and south of the object.

If we consider the objective point of view, then, as a rule, satellites come from their planets. However, scientists have recently been amazed: there are some reasons for believing that Titan is several times older than Saturn! Cassini flew near Titan at a distance of 10,000 kilometers on November 13th. Usually it is 1200 km less, namely about 8200 km. Only in this way can a spacecraft capture the surface of a satellite in more detail: several kilometers per pixel.

The image has different levels of detail, because the satellite is constantly moving. It was made from a variety of photographs connected to one using infrared waves of various lengths. They neutralize the thick orange fog of Titan's atmosphere from the picture. The colors in the image are false, because in fact they are long waves of imaged light collected using a Cassini visual infrared spectrometer. The visible light around the photograph is only 0.5 μm.

NASA reports that the pictures taken by Cassini, speak about the similarity of the moon of Saturn with our moon. The surface of both satellites has many craters, it is covered with high dunes, river channels and the Great Lakes.

On Titan, unlike the moon, there are very few craters. It can be assumed that it is relatively young, and its re-formation occurs due to wind, fluids and tectonic movements, as on Earth.

However, the surface of Titan is heated to 179 degrees Celsius. Its sand consists of dark grains of hydrocarbons, solid on the surface of the water like ice. That is why all the stones can be compared with liquid. Solid objects falling on the surface of Titat are almost gaseous substances.

Despite the fact that the satellite's atmosphere consists mainly of nitrogen (about 95%), and it also contains some other elements, such as methane. Methane, a compound of carbon and hydrogen, does not exceed cosmic radiation and is located predominantly in the upper atmosphere of Titan, contributing to the appearance of an orange haze that hides the surface of the moon from visible light.

Carbon, hydrogen and nitrogen in the compound in the atmosphere of Titan create many organic molecules. This makes it look like the early atmosphere of the Earth at the earliest stages of its formation.

Cassini’s mission is one of the most famous collaborative projects between NASA, the European Space Agency (abbreviated ESA) and the Italian Space Agency. The mission is managed through the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, which is designed, developed and assembled specifically for Cassini.

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