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探索土星的卫星“泰坦”上的甲烷湖

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JO_Editor1 发表于 2012-10-2 23:54:50 | 显示全部楼层 |阅读模式
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转帖来源: SPACE.com
转帖网址链接: http://www.space.com/17829-titan-lakes-boat-talise-mission.html
本帖最后由 JO_Editor1 于 2012-10-3 00:46 编辑

欧洲科学家提出发射考察船去探索土星的卫星“泰坦”上的甲烷湖

Proposed Space Boat Could Explore Lakes On Saturn's Moon Titan


Images from NASA's Cassini mission show river networks draining into lakes in Titan's north polar region.
CREDIT: NASA/JPL/USGS

While rovers are ideal for exploring Mars, a boat is best for Titan, Saturn's largest moon. Scientists are proposing a new mission to explore this alluring world that would send a floating probe to land in a lake on Titan.

Titan, the largest of the more than 60 natural satellites of Saturn, is covered in seas, lakes and rivers of methane, and hosts a thick atmosphere, making it one of the most Earth-like bodies in the solar system. Smaller than Earth but wider than Mercury, Titan is in many ways more like a planet than a moon.

Scientists don't know if life might be possible on Titan. Some think it's too cold, as average temperatures are a chilly minus 289 degrees Fahrenheit (minus 178 degrees Celsius). Yet others say the insulating atmosphere and plentiful liquids, not to mention a possible subsurface ocean, could be hospitable to microbial organisms.

That's part of the reason researchers are so eager to explore the world, which has been imaged in recent years by NASA's Cassini mission, and was even studied by the accompanying European Space Agency Huygens probe, which plunged through Titan's atmosphere and touched down on land in January 2005, transmitting a few hours of data before it went quiet.

Huygens confirmed that lakes, rivers and seas of liquid hydrocarbons abound on Titan. Now scientists want to send a follow-up mission to explore them.

That's where the Titan Lake In-situ Sampling Propelled Explorer (TALISE) comes in. The proposed mission would land a boat, propelled by wheels, paddles or screws, to float around Ligeia Mare, the largest lake on the moon, located near Titan's north pole. After splashing down, TALISE would make its way to the coast over the course of a trip lasting six months to a year.

"The main innovation in TALISE is the propulsion system," Igone Urdampilleta of Spain-based private engineering firm SENER, a member of the TALISE team, said in a statement. "This allows the probe to move, under control, from the landing site in the lake, to the closest shore. The displacement capability would achieve the obtaining of liquid and solid samples from several scientific interesting locations on Titan's surface such as the landing place, along the route towards the shore and finally at the shoreline."

TALISE is a joint project of SENER and the Centro de Astrobiología in Madrid, Spain. The concept is in its beginning stages, but scientists presented the proposal on Sept. 27 at the European Planetary Science Congress in Madrid.

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SunZhen 发表于 2012-10-3 11:19:56 | 显示全部楼层
本帖最后由 SunZhen 于 2012-10-3 11:31 编辑

很有趣,科学家们真是聪明,设计各种各样的探测器,用于研究这些与地球如此不同的星体上的科学,不知道Titan上的甲烷湖和甲烷海有多深,是否整个星球由外及内都是这些轻物质,忽然好奇,如果甲烷是液体,聚成湖泊,那么作为背景的固体土壤是什么成分?
jlinwhoi 发表于 2012-10-3 21:34:09 | 显示全部楼层
本帖最后由 jlinwhoi 于 2012-10-3 21:42 编辑

回复 2# SunZhen

孙老师,以下信息根据http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Titan_(moon)

不知道Titan上的甲烷湖和甲烷海有多深

2009-2010年,Cassini飞船的雷达测量的结果表明接近“泰坦”南极的Ontario Lacus甲烷湖很浅,平均只有0.4-3.2米深,最深2.9–7.4米。该湖面波纹小于3毫米,显示该地区风力小,或湖里的液体稠密。而北半球的Ligeia Mare湖的深度则超过8米。

是否整个星球由外及内都是这些轻物质


“泰坦”星体的内部圈层图(来源:http://www.nasa.gov/mission_page ... titan20120223L.html

科学家认为“泰坦”星体的总质量的60%为岩石,40%为水。从外到内的各主要圈层包括:大气圈、外壳圈(由水、冰笼形化合物组成)、液体海洋圈(外壳下、全球连接、已测出其潮汐)、高压冰壳圈(由冰VI结构组成)、核(由水合硅酸盐组成)。

忽然好奇,如果甲烷是液体,聚成湖泊,那么作为背景的固体土壤是什么成分?

根据wiki介绍,背景的固体土壤可能包括水冰、碳氢化合物冰、大气里碳氢化合物的沉淀物等。

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SunZhen 发表于 2012-10-5 10:00:52 | 显示全部楼层
回复 3# jlinwhoi


   谢谢林老师介绍,这真是很有趣!由此可见,科学家真是幸运,可以不停地认识和了解新的东西!
lfan 发表于 2012-10-8 21:18:34 | 显示全部楼层
3毫米的波浪……是古井无波,还是芝麻糊并不是最要命的,能测量出这个精度才真让人惊奇,得是100GHz以上的雷达频率。
jlinwhoi 发表于 2012-12-13 22:39:47 | 显示全部楼层
This Is the Biggest River Anywhere Outside Earth

(转载来源:http://gizmodo.com/5968110/this- ... where-outside-earth



This image, snapped by Cassini as it passed over Saturn's moon Titan, shows the biggest liquid system ever found on any world other than Earth.

Scientists have observed lakes and streams on Titan before, but this river is by far the largest yet: it measures over 320 kilometers in length. That's still twenty times shorter than the Nile, but makes the the Titan river the largest body of liquid ever observed away from Earth.

Unlike our planet, though, this river doesn't flow with water: instead, it's a swirling mass of liquid hydrocarbons such as methane and ethane, which take a liquid state on the moon's -170C surface. Sorry, that means inner-tubing is out. [NASA via Wired]

Image by NASA

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jlinwhoi 发表于 2013-1-16 00:09:03 | 显示全部楼层
本帖最后由 JO_Editor1 于 2013-1-16 11:58 编辑

Saturn Moon Titan May Have Ice Floating in Lakes

(来源:http://www.space.com/19216-saturn-moon-titan-seas-ice.html


图1. Lakes on Saturn's moon Titan reflect radio waves in varying ways in this image from NASA's Cassini spacecraft. Image released Jan. 8, 2013. (CREDIT: NASA/JPL-Caltech/ASI/Cornell)

Chunks of hydrocarbon ice may float atop the lakes and seas of Saturn's huge moon Titan, a new study reveals.

The presence of such ice floes in the ethane and methane seas on Titan would make the moon an even more exciting target for astrobiologists, researchers said.

"One of the most intriguing questions about these lakes and seas is whether they might host an exotic form of life," study co-author Jonathan Lunine of Cornell University said in a statement. "And the formation of floating hydrocarbon ice will provide an opportunity for interesting chemistry along the boundary between liquid and solid, a boundary that may have been important in the origin of terrestrial life."

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lfan 发表于 2013-1-18 15:41:50 | 显示全部楼层
回复 7# jlinwhoi


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