Tech & Science Rivers Flow On Saturn’s Moon Titan More Like Mars

10:20  19 may  2017
10:20  19 may  2017 Source:   International Business Times

Going Back to Pluto? Scientists to Push for Orbiter Mission

  Going Back to Pluto? Scientists to Push for Orbiter Mission Humanity's first up-close look at Pluto was so intriguing that some researchers want to go back and spend a lot more time studying the icy world. Late last month, 35 scientists met for 7 hours in Houston to discuss the basic blueprint and science goals of a potential Pluto orbiter mission. Such an effort would build upon the knowledge gained during the epic Pluto flyby performed in July 2015 by NASA's New Horizons probe.Participants came away from the April 24 workshop fired up and committed to doing their best to make such a project happen, said New Horizons principal investigator Alan Stern, who was there.

Rivers Flow On Saturn ’ s Moon Titan More Like Mars . The rivers on Titan , Saturn ’ s biggest moon , flow across its landscape the way they used to on Mars before it dried up, so Titan may not be as similar to Earth as we thought.

The evolution of the hydrocarbon-rich surface on Saturn ' s largest moon , Titan , may have more in common with the history of Mars ' dusty landscape than with Earth's dynamic geology, scientists said in new research. By studying the flow of river channels etched into the surfaces of Titan

River networks on, from left to right, Mars, Earth and Titan are shown here. Researchers have suggested that Earth is the odd one out after finding more similarities between Mars and Titan in how their topography formed and how that influenced the way rivers flowed on their surfaces. <br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /> © Provided by IBT US River networks on, from left to right, Mars, Earth and Titan are shown here. Researchers have suggested that Earth is the odd one out after finding more similarities between Mars and Titan in how their topography formed and how that influenced the way rivers flowed on their surfaces. 







Titan is the only place in our solar system where liquid currently flows in the same way it does on Earth, but it turns out that this moon of Saturn may have more in common with Mars than with our planet.

Recent research suggests while Earth’s landscape was formed more by collisions beneath its surface, with tectonic plates crashing to form mountains and influence the path of rivers, rivers on Titan and the traces of ancient rivers on Mars did not show signs of the same processes.

Mining The Moon For Rocket Fuel To Get Us To Mars

  Mining The Moon For Rocket Fuel To Get Us To Mars The moon is back at the center of efforts not only to explore space, but to create a permanent, independent space-faring society. Planning expeditions to Earth’s nearest celestial neighbor is no longer just a NASA effort, though the U.S. space agency has plans for a moon-orbiting space station that would serve as a staging ground for Mars missions in the early 2030s. The United Launch Alliance, a joint venture between Lockheed Martin and Boeing, is planning a lunar fueling station for spacecraft, capable of supporting 1,000 people living in space within 30 years.

Saturn ’ s Moon Titan . Article Updated: 3 Mar , 2017. Titan takes 15 days and 22 hours to complete a single orbit of Saturn . Like the Moon and many satellites that orbit the other gas giants, its rotational period is identical to its orbital period.

NASA’s Cassini spacecraft has spotted a river system stretching more than 200 miles on Saturn ’ s moon Titan . Titan ’s mini-Nile doesn’t flow with water, which freezes to be hard as stone on the moon , but rather liquid hydrocarbons such as methane and ethane, which are stable in the moon ’s

A study in the journal Science reported analyzing those river patterns leads scientists to “long-wavelength topography on Titan and Mars,” referring to processes like, in the case of the icy Titan, tidal pull from its mother planet Saturn causing changes in the thickness of its crust rather than tectonic plate activity within the crust itself. The topography is not in constant flux the way it is on Earth, where rivers can be diverted.

For the Titan observations, the researchers used information sent back from NASA’s Cassini spacecraft, which has been hanging out near Titan, Saturn and the planet’s other moons for several years. River map data already existed for Earth and Mars, and they compared the features of rivers on the different worlds, including their slope and the direction of their flow. With Mars and Titan, but not with Earth, details of those rivers did not show tectonic plate activity in its recent past, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology said.

Stunning Close-Up of Icy Saturn Moon Enceladus Reveals Its Rough Past

  Stunning Close-Up of Icy Saturn Moon Enceladus Reveals Its Rough Past Saturn's moon Enceladus has had a rough life — and it's got the scars to prove it. &nbsp;A recently released photo by NASA's Saturn-orbiting Cassini spacecraft shows the many craters, as well as snaking fissures and other geological features, pocking the northern reaches of 313-mile-wide (504 kilometers) Enceladus.

Nile- like River Found on Saturn ’ s Moon Titan . It’s found huge sand dunes, structures that look like volcanoes … and a series of smooth, dark regions at both poles that look very much like lakes.

In fact, it may not even be that unique in our solar system, as Saturn ' s fascinating moon Titan has repeatedly proved. It's also the only place other than Earth known to boast liquid bodies on its surface (though Titan 's lakes and rivers flow with liquid methane and ethane, not water).

“While the processes that created Titan’s topography are still enigmatic, this rules out some of the mechanisms we’re most familiar with on Earth,” lead author Benjamin Black said in the MIT statement.

That could be a bit of a bummer for people who are rooting for Titan as a candidate for human exploration or even as a host for alien life. Although the liquid flowing on its surface and raining from the sky is methane rather than water, it has been a point of interest for space enthusiasts because in addition to being the only moon with dense clouds and atmosphere, it is the only place in the solar system other than Earth where liquid flows in that way — at least in modern times. There is evidence liquid once flowed on the surface of Mars.

In fact, recent research suggests at a certain time in Martian history, including when it still had a thick atmosphere that had yet to be lost to outer space, rain fell heavily. That rain would have been strong enough to erode craters and saturate the soil, eventually flowing into rivers that left valleys or channel-like marks on its surface when they dried up. Those marks say a lot about the conditions on the planet while the water was flowing, even if they have since changed or disappeared: “Rivers erode the landscape, leaving behind signatures that depend on whether the surface topography was in place before, during, or after the period of liquid flow,” the study said.

Stunning Close-Up of Icy Saturn Moon Enceladus Reveals Its Rough Past

  Stunning Close-Up of Icy Saturn Moon Enceladus Reveals Its Rough Past Saturn's moon Enceladus has had a rough life — and it's got the scars to prove it. &nbsp;A recently released photo by NASA's Saturn-orbiting Cassini spacecraft shows the many craters, as well as snaking fissures and other geological features, pocking the northern reaches of 313-mile-wide (504 kilometers) Enceladus.

A miniature version of the Nile River , seen on Saturn ’ s moon Titan by the international Cassini mission. The river valley stretches more than "Such faults – fractures in Titan 's bedrock – may not imply plate tectonics, like on Earth, but still lead to the opening of basins and perhaps to the formation

Titan is appearing more Earth- like all the time (yes, a very cold, and early version of Earth), as now the Cassini spacecraft has spotted what appears to be a miniature extraterrestrial version of the Nile River : a river valley on Saturn ’ s moon Titan that extends from what looks like ‘headwaters’ out to a

Regardless of how similar to or different from each other Titan and Earth are, the study provides clues about how the pieces of our solar system developed over time. “There’s this amazing opportunity to use the landforms the rivers have created to learn how the histories of these worlds are different,” researcher and MIT geology Professor Taylor Perron said in the university’s statement.

The river comparison suggests Martian topography was already fairly solidified before the rivers started flowing and that largely influenced the way the water moved, despite later asteroid impacts and volcanic eruptions.

“We know something about rivers, and something about topography, and we expect that rivers are interacting with topography as it evolves,” Black said. “Our goal was to use those pieces to crack the code of what formed the topography in the first place.”

Europe’s Mars Schiaparelli lander crashed due to a software glitch .
A series of errors resulted in the parachute being released too earlyThe report highlights reveals a timeline for the crash, noting that “between [Entry in the Mars atmosphere] and Parachute Deployment triggering, an unexpected evolution in the spin rate of the [Entry Demonstrator Module] was noticed.” The vehicle’s parachute deployed as expected, but its Inertial Measurement Unit detected that it detected a “larger than expected” angular pitch rate, which triggered a “saturation” alert. The Guidance Navigation and Control system believed that the angular rate was the same as the saturation threshold, which threw off the capsule’s calculated altitude.

Source: http://uk.pressfrom.com/news/tech-science/-159413-rivers-flow-on-saturn-s-moon-titan-more-like-mars/

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