Titan, one of the 62 moons that orbit the planet Saturn, is also the largest. With a diameter of 5,149.4 kilometers, Titan is approximately half the size of Earth and twice the size of Earth's moon.
However, we can not simply stop the comparison between the Titan and the Earth, let's dig a little deeper, because Titan is very special!
Titan was discovered on March 25, 1655 by Christiaan Huygens and received the name of John Herschel in honor of the Greek mythological gods. Although Titan is a Moon, its atmosphere is surprisingly similar to that of the early Earth.
It has a heavy atmosphere and cloud formations within it. It was believed that such an atmospheric condition was present on Earth, which is believed to be a fuel for the formation of life on Earth.
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Many believe that Titan has its own moon, however, this claim is false. Titan is itself a moon of Saturn and has no other celestial body to turn around it.
However, it is larger than the planet Mercury and is almost as big as the planet Mars.
The atmosphere is not the only thing that makes Titan different, it also has lakes and other bodies of water that flow like the ones we see on earth. But they hide a big difference, the lakes that flow from Titan are not filled with water, but with hydrocarbons, to be more precise, liquid methane and liquid ethane.
These liquids evaporate and form the clouds of Titan. And because its clouds are made of methane and ethane, it rains the same on Titan.
However, interestingly, only 5% of Titan's atmosphere contains a mixture of hydrocarbons, while the rest is nitrogen.
Another fascinating feature of Titan is that the surface of Titan is covered with a layer of ice. Researchers believe that water is present beneath the ice sheet, and the contact between water and hydrocarbons can act as catalyst life.
More earthly than our neighbors.
There are also desert areas covered by a substance similar to the ground. These are not silicate materials that we see in the earth, but they are solid water covered with hydrocarbons that fall from the atmosphere, almost black.
Then, when looking for a place similar to Earth, Titan is presented as a viable candidate, however, Titan is also a place of vast extremes. At the highest temperatures, the Titan measures at a bone temperature of -179 ° C.
Therefore, the ice will not melt soon and will remain so for many, many years.
However, Titan's temperature will gradually increase over the years, and scientists believe that from 5 to 6 billion years from now, they will reach something in the range of -70 ° C. In such a temperature range , the Titan will be able to hold oceans that are a mixture of ammonia and water.
Although the Titan has a large amount of hydrocarbons, there is a total absence of carbon dioxide (CO2), the critical component that ensures the sustenance of the life of the plant.
There are also visible craters that are scattered about Titan. This is a sign that it had impacts on its surface, possible meteorites in the past.
One of the defining characteristics of the Earth's atmosphere is the change of seasons. Titan also has seasons, but unlike Earth, each season lasts 7.5 years.
In June of 2016, the Cassini Orbiter discovered something very interesting in the north pole of Titan. A bright patch was discovered that spaced an area of 120,000 square kilometers.
The satellite picked it up and, after the analysis, the researchers were able to find out what it was, the evaporation of a puddle caused by methane rain.
The rain during that time was a sign that Titan was slowly approaching the summer season. Cassini, Saturn's orbiting satellite, had special infrared cameras that helped him study what happened beyond the thick atmosphere of Titan.
Another characteristic that makes Earth so suitable for us is the level of gravity it has. Imagine the earth without gravity, and chaos surely arises.
Since Titan has less mass than Earth, it is bound to have less gravitational force. Researchers have calculated that objects falling freely on Titan will have a speed of only 1.6 meters per second, while the same object will have a speed of 9.2 meters per second.
In essence, Titan's gravity is somewhat equivalent to that of the Moon. So yes, we can jump higher and farther than we can on Earth when we are on Titan.
Jenelle Wellons, NASA's Instrument Operations engineer, shared Reddit's views on Titan: "What if we consider one of the aquatic worlds in our solar system?" Titan "Titan" is Saturn's largest moon, even larger than the planet Mercury, so I think we could settle for enough space, it has a thick atmosphere that could help protect us from space radiation, it's so dense that we could hook wings to our arms and fly on this moon, I do not know, it just seems as an incredible place to live. "
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His views were an answer to the question "Where would be the most appropriate place in the universe if we could not live theoretically on earth?". Now we would resort to a more common response that is the moon or Mars.
However, this is a very interesting shot, since everything you shared are facts about Titan that make it a viable option, not today, but definitely when the time comes!
It is really amazing to see the Earth as the atmosphere in our solar system itself. Surely, Titan is not in any suitable place to sustain life, but having the knowledge that we have something very similar to Earth gives us the hope of finding a planet like Earth someday, a safe haven if and when we have set limits here on Mother Earth