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Questions tagged [titan]

Questions relating to the exploration of Titan, a moon of Saturn.

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Any proposed missions to explore the black liquid on Titan? Technical challenges?

I was very interested to know what the black lake on Titan would look like. Are there any plans or proposals for a future mission to land on and/or in one of the lakes of black liquid on Titan, or ...
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How quickly might a Titan rover get covered in oil and dirt? Will it need windshield-wipers?

These questions and their answers address some potential aspects of a rover on Saturn's moon Titan. Titan rover survival challenges What are the technical challenges in building a Titan rover that ...
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How do they know some lakes on Titan are 100 meters deep?

JPL News item NASA's Cassini Reveals Surprises with Titan's Lakes NASA's Solar System Dynamics New item Cassini Reveals Surprises with Titan's Lakes point out that some lakes on Titan have been ...
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How large of a mirror would be needed to warm Titan up?

How large of a mirror would be needed to warm Titan up to ~290K? Paul Birch in his paper "Terroforming Mars Quickly" calculated a mirror size of: Support Mirror: 2.5 x 10^7m radius 3x 105m wide ...
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Conditions on Titan under which human breath can be set to fire

Motivated by the question Titan vs Mars for colonization, I wonder what exactly happens if human exhalation products are released into Titanian atmosphere and, say, a spark igniter happens to be ...
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Does the Dragonfly project (quadcopters on Titan) envision attached RTG's or would they be static and revisited for charging?

In this answer I link to the Phys.org article Researcher sets eyes on Saturn's largest moon which describes the Dragonfly project, a way to explore extended areas of Titan's surface difficult to probe ...
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Why does Titan have an atmosphere?

Why does Titan have an atmosphere given its relatively small mass (comparable to our moon)? Why is it not lost to space or is Titan's atmosphere constantly being replenished?
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Are there plans for another mission to Titan?

I've always liked the idea of exploring the moon Titan, most likely because of the atmosphere, pressure, and the fact that it has stable bodies of liquids at the surface. Although it's very cold, ...
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How would humans with appropriate equipment travel the surface of Saturn's moon Titan on foot?

Taking into account the physical characteristics of Titan (e.g. surface gravity, atmospheric pressure), what would be the most efficient method of motion for an astronaut to travel the surface of ...
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Is Titan still the best bet for Extra-Terrestrial life?

I remember reading - probably decades ago - that Titan would be the most likely body within out Solar System to contain life. If memory serves, this was due to methane in the atmosphere and what were ...
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Could Liquid Methane on Titan be used as a Heat Source?

I was reading this question about how plausible a Titan rover is and the biggest problem with anything on Titan always seems to be the heating issues for spacecraft, especially the fact that batteries ...
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Was there any downside of the approach trajectory of the Huygen's probe?

I found this image on the Wikipedia page for the Huygens spacecraft: Source Titan orbits saturn at ~5.57 km/s. The probe seemed to reach ~6.5 km/s before hitting Titan. The probe's velocity vector ...
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If Cassini's final flyby of Saturn's moon Titan is the 127th Titan flyby, why is it called “T-126”?

Cassini's final flyby of Titan in April 2017 sealed it's fate in September of that year. This is described further in answers to What force is bringing Cassini down into Saturn's atmosphere in another ...
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Why Never-EVER Land?

In this answer @Hobbes points out that data from the Huygens lander is still generating a high flux of new publications in 2018. One of them in the search results linked there is: Never-EVER Land - A ...
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What are the technical challenges in building a Titan rover that didn't need heating?

In the discussion of this question it is assumed that we would need to heat the rover so that (most of) it's components were operating at temperatures much hotter than ambient (about 90K). Current ...
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Why are Titan's lakes “black” in radar images rather than transparent?

Searching after reading Titan rover questions (1, 2, 3) lead me to Space.com's Titan Has More Oil Than Earth which says in part: "Titan is just covered in carbon-bearing material — it's a giant ...
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Titan rover survival challenges

The Huygens probe didn't last long. What are the challenges of operating a rover on the surface of Titan for at least a few months and what technologies would be used to overcome these?
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Piggybacking to Enceladus

The latest NASA New Frontiers selection did not select any finalist proposals to Enceladus, which is one of the most promising targets for life in the solar system. It did however select Dragonfly, ...
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Delta-v obtained from Titan by the Cassini spacecraft; just how much of a “gas tank” was it?

In the video Cassini at Titan: A World Unveiled after about 01:56 Linda Spilker, Cassini Project Scientist, Jet Propulsion Laboratory says: Not only was Titan ...
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Maximum survivable atmospheric pressure

Given a similar mix of gases to those in our Earth's atmosphere, what is the upper limit of survivable atmospheric pressure for a human? Could a human survive higher pressures with a gas mix unlike ...
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How do I dress for a hike on a hot summer day on Titan?

Titan has an atmosphere with a surface pressure of around 150 kPa. It has an average surface temperature of around 94 K, around -183°C. On a nice, sunny, calm, summer day near the equator, it may ...
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Budgetary mission considerations for a disembodied pilot/crew? [closed]

It is not unusual in Science Fiction for a disembodied human to be on spaceship. Either the brain is removed from the body; kept alive artificially and often connected to the ship directly. ...
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Can a spaceship land on an icy body using retropropulsion? wouldn't the ice melt?

Can a spaceship, say Musk's BFR, actually land on the ice surface of Titan, or Europa, or Enceladus? It seems to me that the hot exhaust gases would make the surface melt where the rocket is trying ...
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Where to get Cassini VIMS data and optical transmission spectra of Titan's atmosphere?

In the extensive 2010 paper HYDROCARBON DEPOSITS ON TITAN by Clark et al. there are two plots that show Titan's atmospheric transmission windows. These plots (Figures 1 and 5) can be used to indicate ...
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Titan - Is the source of so much Methane being overlooked?

Is the source of so much Methane on Titan being overlooked? Tons of very intelligent and knowledgeable people already looked at it, so the answer in undoubtedly "no", so I guess my question is more ...
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What type of information can be gathered from a plot of brightness against wavelength?

While reading this paper about the possibilities JWST will provide to study Titan, I have come across a graph that plots brightness (not sure what units it is in) against wavelength in micron. Here it ...
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What is the process to produce a chemical composition spectrum of a celestial body?

I have come across this spectrum, which depicts the chemical composition of Titan's atmosphere: Taken from here. I would like to know how do scientists generate such spectra, starting with capturing ...
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What would a “water” landing on Titan be like? How viscous is the liquid?

The abstract to the recent paper Never-EVER Land - A Titan Flyer Concept is shown below. I've asked about the need for the aircraft to remain in flight continuously and land only at the end of it's ...
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Is data from Huygens still being analyzed in 2018?

The Huygens probe landed on Saturn's moon Titan about 13 years ago and provided unique "first-hand" data about Titan. I was unable to find how many papers have been published based on this data, but ...
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How can I find which chemical compounds can be seen on Titan's surface?

Titan has a thick atmosphere made up of mostly molecular Nitrogen and Methane which absorbs light and blocks the surface to telescopes, save for certain "spectral windows" (the white portions in the ...
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What is the solar flux on Titan?

I' trying to solve for the surface temperature Ts=((n+1)So(1-A)4)1/4, and thus So=L/4𝞹a2 but I cannot seem to find the value for solar flux or its luminosity.
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How much sunlight gets to the surface of Titan? What would astronauts see?

Saturn being at 10 A.U. means sunlight on Titan's cloud tops is about 1/100 that on Earth's. That's 4000 times the illumination of Earth's moon. Titan's atmosphere is described as opaque smog. If ...
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Did the Huygens lander have a flood-light for photography? Was it used?

According to this cool answer the Huygens lander on Saturn's moon Titan had a flood light to aid in photography of the surface because of the very low ambient light levels due to the 9.5x farther ...
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Does a Titan flyby guarantee that a spacecraft can escape Saturn?

Could a spacecraft orbiting Saturn, like Cassini, use a Titan gravity assist to leave the Saturn system (e.g. to bring a sample back to Earth), without using fuel other than to reach Titan?
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What is the evidence that the dunes of Titan are made of “water chips”?

The Southern California Public Radio news item What Cassini saw on Titan: 'Dunes of the Arabian desert' but made of water chips, not sand explains: "Little chips of water ice come off (the ...
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Delta-V between Titan and other Saturnian moons

Does anyone have a table of the delta-V between Titan escape and other moons of Saturn? If not, could someone provide figures for Hyperion, Phoebe, Iapetus, and Enceladus? Or, more simply, what is the ...
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How much methane to push Titan into Saturn?

How much methane would have to be expended (think Raptor engine) to propel Titan into Saturn? It's clearly a humongous amount.
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Build an engine that burns tholins

My idea is to send an hypothetical lander/rover to Titan, and recover from this some samples of rocks... To create a very efficient engine, I suppose to carry only liquid oxygen, and burn the ...
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Why was Titan the first celestial body beyond Mars to be landed on?

If my memories are accurate, then there's only one celestial body beyond Mars, on which any man-made device was landed. Pictures made there are, in fact, quite popular among space fans. But why Titan?...
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Would astronauts need a heat shield to land on Titan from orbital speeds?

At orbital speeds around the Earth, things tend to burn up on striking the atmosphere, since they're going so fast. To get an astronaut (for example) home safely from those speeds, they need to have ...
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How could a hot lander enter Titan's atmosphere without setting its hydrocarbons ablaze?

Whenever a lander enters an atmosphere, it generates a lot of friction and that heats up the heat shield. On Earth we have seen videos of spacecraft with red-hot shields. On Saturn's moon Titan, ...
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Titan's interior

I'm reading an article and it says It's [sic] internal makeup is likely differentiated into several layers, with a 3,400-kilometre (2,100 mi) rocky center surrounded by layers composed of ...
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Titan trajectories options

As a little project in a course of spacecraft design, I have to plan a mission to Saturn's moon Titan. The recommended trajectory is Hohmann transfer since it's easy to calculate the delta-V and ...
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Why would TALISE be directed to the shore of Ligeia Mare?

TALISE (Titan Lake In-situ Sampling Propelled Explorer) is a proposed automated boat that would float in a lake called Ligeia Mare on Saturn's moon Titan. I saw an article that said once it touches ...
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Is Cassini equipped for detection of non-water-based exobiology?

Looking at one of the latest images of Titan's north pole as taken by Cassini probe made me curious how well equipped this NASA's probe actually is to detect non-water-based exobiology?   &...