GLOBAL EXPLORATION OF TITAN’S CLIMATE: OFF THE SHELF TECHNOLOGY AND METHODS AS AN ENABLER
AuthorMitchell, B. J.
AffiliationThe Johns Hopkins University
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RightsCopyright © International Foundation for Telemetering
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AbstractRecent narrow band imagery of the surface of Titan reveals a very non-uniform surface. While there are no global oceans of liquid ethane/methane as once conjectured, the imagery does suggest the possibility of seas or lakes of liquid ethane, methane, and other organic materials. If these exist, Titan could be considered a gigantic analog model of the Earth's climate system complete with land masses, moderately thick atmosphere, and large bodies of liquid. By studying the climate of Titan, we could gain further understanding of the processes and mechanisms that shape the Earth's climate. Reuse of existing technology and methods may be a way to speed development and lower costs for the global study of Titan. Surprisingly, one of the key technologies could be a Transit or Global Positioning System (GPS) descendant for use in tracking probes wandering the surface of Titan.
SponsorsInternational Foundation for Telemetering