Ten years ago, in 1996, John Zarnecki, Huygens Surface Science Package Principal Investigator, talked about what he expected from the Huygens landing, and his hopes for a landing on liquid
Science & Exploration

Cassini's radar spots 'Great Lakes' on Titan

25/07/2006 743 views 0 likes
ESA / Science & Exploration / Space Science / Cassini-Huygens

The Cassini spacecraft, using its radar system, has discovered very strong evidence for hydrocarbon lakes on Titan. Dark patches, which resemble terrestrial lakes, seem to be sprinkled all over the high latitudes surrounding Titan's north pole.

Jean-Pierre Lebreton, Huygens Project scientist, is very enthusiastic about the discovery. "This is a fascinating observation. My dream of alien liquid bodies appearing in Cassini's eyes after we'd missed them with Huygens has finally come true. Huygens most likely landed on a dry lake; its bottom was wet from methane, but there was no real splash! In effect, the Huygens probe design would have permitted it to survive, at least for a few minutes, a landing on liquid matter. Based on this new evidence, future missions to Titan will most likely consider landing in a liquid place as well."

The complete Nasa release can be found here.

Related Links