No oceans on Titan, say researchers

Aug 04, 2005

There are no oceans on Saturn's moon Titan and flat areas of the satellite appear to be solid and dry, U.S. astronomers said.

The moon's atmosphere, containing methane and ethane, had prompted speculation that lakes or oceans of these chemicals might be found on Titan, reported the BBC Thursday.

"We infer mechanisms that produce very flat solid surfaces, involving a substance that was liquid in the past but is not in liquid form at the locations we studied," Robert West, of the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, in Pasadena, Calif., wrote in Nature.

The observations were focused on Titan's southern hemisphere, however, the northern region may contain pools of liquid organic material, the researchers said.

Copyright 2005 by United Press International

Explore further: Europe hoists first navigation satellites post mislaunch

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Antifreeze on Titan could affect its chances for life

Jun 21, 2013

Scientists have found that a common antifreeze compound that might exist on Saturn's moon Titan can get trapped within ice-like cages. This discovery could influence our ideas about the evolution and development ...

A water ocean on Titan?

May 05, 2011

Oddities in the rotation of Saturn's largest moon Titan might add to growing evidence that it harbors an underground ocean, researchers suggest.

Cassini sails into new ocean adventures on Titan

Nov 11, 2014

(Phys.org) —NASA's Cassini mission continues its adventures in extraterrestrial oceanography with new findings about the hydrocarbon seas on Saturn's moon Titan. During a flyby in August, the spacecraft ...

Preparing for alien life

Nov 10, 2014

At a recent event sponsored by NASA and the Library of Congress, a group of scientists and scholars explored how we might prepare for the inevitable discovery of life beyond Earth.

Recommended for you

Europe resumes Galileo satnav deployment (Update)

Mar 27, 2015

Europe resumed deployment of its beleaguered Galileo satnav programme on Friday, launching a pair of satellites seven months after a rocket malfunction sent two multi-million euro orbiters awry.

More evidence for groundwater on Mars

Mar 27, 2015

Monica Pondrelli and colleagues investigated the Equatorial Layered Deposits (ELDs) of Arabia Terra in Firsoff crater area, Mars, to understand their formation and potential habitability. On the plateau, ...

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.