Friday, September 16, 2005

New Titan Image: Titan's Rain Drains to the Plains


This is the second of three views released by the Cassini RADAR team showing portions of the RADAR SAR swath returned last week. This portion is from south central Tsegihi near 48 degrees South, 14 degrees West. This view extends 240 kilometers from left to right. At top, you can see a deeply incised channel flowing from a region of bright, rough terrain down to darker, smoother material. This fits with the view that methane rains wash material from the bright highlands down to darker plains. Near the bottom of the image, there is a branching network of channels, with the widths of the channels varying. These properties are suggestive of rainfall run-off channels rather than river networks.

Still, note how well this liquid has eroded these channels. These are quite deeply incised, suggesting either that the liquid efficiently erodes the bedrock, or these channels have been active for a good percentage of geologic time.

7 Comments:

Anonymous Jerry said...

"...either that the liquid efficiently erodes the bedrock, or these channels have been active for a good percentage of geologic time."

That is the 64,000 dollar question.

9/19/2005 08:36:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

If the enigmatic fluid flows over great distances ( up to 200 km ), that means that it remains in its liquid form for a long time!That must be ethane or methane!

Webscientist

9/26/2005 10:59:00 AM  
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