AuthorDhingra, Rajani D.
Barnes, Jason W.
Brown, Robert H.
Burrati, Bonnie J.
Nicholson, Phillip D.
Baines, Kevin H.
Clark, Roger N.
Soderblom, Jason M.
Mouélic, Stéphane Le
Turtle, Elizabeth P.
Perry, Jason E.
Jennings, Don E.
AffiliationUniv Arizona, Dept Planetary Sci
Univ Arizona, Lunar & Planetary Lab
MetadataShow full item record
PublisherAMER GEOPHYSICAL UNION
CitationDhingra, R. D., Barnes, J. W., Brown, R. H., Burrati, B. J., Sotin, C., Nicholson, P. D., et al. ( 2019). Observational evidence for summer rainfall at Titan's north pole. Geophysical Research Letters, 46, 1205– 1212. https://doi.org/10.1029/2018GL080943
JournalGEOPHYSICAL RESEARCH LETTERS
Rights©2019. American Geophysical Union. All Rights Reserved.
Collection InformationThis item from the UA Faculty Publications collection is made available by the University of Arizona with support from the University of Arizona Libraries. If you have questions, please contact us at email@example.com.
AbstractMethane rain on Saturn's moon Titan makes it the only place, other than Earth, where rain interacts with the surface. When and where that rain wets the surface changes seasonally in ways that remain poorly understood. Here we report the discovery of a bright ephemeral feature covering an area of 120,000 km(2) near Titan's north pole in observations from Cassini's near-infrared instrument, Visual and Infrared Mapping Spectrometer on 7 June 2016. Based on the overall brightness, spectral characteristics, and geologic context, we attribute this new feature to specular reflections from a rain-wetted solid surface like those off of a sunlit wet sidewalk. The reported observation is the first documented rainfall event at Titan's north pole and heralds the arrival of the northern summer (through climatic evidence), which has been delayed relative to model predictions. This detection helps constrain Titan's seasonal change and shows that the "wet-sidewalk effect can be used to identify other rain events."
Note6 month embargo; published online: 16 January 2019
VersionFinal published version
SponsorsNASA/ESA Cassini Project; NASA Cassini Data Analysis and Participating Scientists (CDAPS) [NNX15AI77G]