Latest Huygens probe Stories

2006-06-27 16:03:49

As the Cassini spacecraft reaches the halfway mark in its four-year tour of the Saturn system, discoveries made during the first half of the mission have scientists revved up to find out what's in store for the second act. Cassini has been orbiting Saturn since June 30, 2004, studying the planet, its rings and moons. "The spacecraft has spent a considerable amount of time studying the moon Titan during 15 separate flybys so far. In the second half of its prime mission, ending June 2008,...

2006-03-01 15:30:00

Arizona -- An international team of planetary scientists may have solved the mystery of why the atmosphere of Saturn's moon, Titan, is rich in methane. Methane, which on Titan plays a role similar to water on Earth, is locked in a methane-rich water ice that forms a crust above an ocean of liquid water mixed with ammonia, the scientists say. Major episodes of outgassing pumped methane into Titan's mostly nitrogen atmosphere three times during the moon's evolutionary history, they...

2005-12-06 07:24:40

CHAMPAIGN, Ill. -- Recent evidence from the Huygens Probe of the Cassini Mission suggests that Titan, the largest moon orbiting Saturn, is a world where rivers of liquid methane sculpt channels in continents of ice. Surface images even show gravel-sized pieces of water ice that resemble rounded stones lying in a dry riverbed on Earth. But with a surface temperature of minus 179 degrees Celsius and an atmospheric pressure 1 1/2 times that of Earth, could fluvial processes on Titan be anything...

2005-12-01 00:00:00

Arizona -- Cassini/Huygens scientists have discovered exactly where on Saturn's largest moon, Titan, the European Space Agency's (ESA) Huygens probe landed last January. Knowing the landing location will allow them to directly compare data from Huygens with remote sensing data from NASA's Cassini orbiter. "Based on a truly project-wide collaboration among a number of members of the extended Cassini/Huygens community, we feel we are finally in a position to announce a definitive correlation...

2005-11-30 17:07:19

By Paul Carrel PARIS (Reuters) - Saturn's moon Titan resembles Earth in many ways but is unlikely to support life, scientists said on Wednesday after almost a year of research into data from the space probe Huygens. After a seven-year trip from Earth piggy-backed on the Saturn probe Cassini, the European-designed Huygens separated last December and headed for Titan, entering the moon's atmosphere in January this year. "Huygens descended through a hazy, windy and turbulent...

2005-11-30 12:15:57

ESA -- Strong turbulence in the upper atmosphere, a second ionospheric layer and possible lightning were among the surprises found by the Huygens Atmospheric Structure Instrument (HASI) during the descent to Titan's surface. HASI provided measurements from an altitude of 1400 km down to the surface of the physical characteristics of the atmosphere and surface, such as temperature and density profiles, electrical conductivity, and surface structure. The Huygens SSP made measurements just...

2005-11-30 11:50:00

PARIS -- Saturn's planet-size moon Titan has dramatic weather, with freezing temperatures, carbon- and nitrogen-rich clouds and possibly lightning, scientists said Wednesday, describing a world that may have looked like Earth before life developed. The European Space Agency's probe landed on Titan in January, uncovering some mysteries of the methane-rich globe - the only moon in the solar system known to have a thick atmosphere. Scientists presented detailed results of months of study in the...

2005-11-08 06:55:00

Saturn's giant moon Titan is so cold that, on its surface, water is as hard as a rock - literally. The European Space Agency's Huygens probe landed on Titan earlier this year. Images sent back to Earth by the probe reveal what appear to be rocks made of super-frozen water. But other instruments on the probe have raised some doubts. Chris McKay, a planetary scientist at NASA Ames Research Center, recently gave a public lecture, sponsored by the Planetary Society, about what scientists have...

2005-10-27 06:25:00

Saturn's moon Titan is notable both because it is the largest moon in our solar system and because it is the only moon in the solar system with a significant atmosphere. Early this year, NASA's Cassini orbiter, currently orbiting Saturn, released the European Space Agency's Huygens probe, which descended through Titan's atmosphere and landed on the moon's surface. Recently, Chris McKay, a planetary research scientist at NASA Ames Research Center, gave a public lecture, sponsored by the...

2005-10-31 07:00:00

There is only one moon in our solar system that has clouds, Saturn's giant moon Titan. First discovered by a scientist using an earthbound telescope, the clouds were later confirmed by NASA's Cassini spacecraft. Chris McKay, a planetary scientist at NASA Ames Research Center, recently gave a public lecture, sponsored by the Planetary Society, about what scientists have learned about Titan from the Cassini-Huygens mission. In this, the second part in a four-part series, McKay talks about...

Latest Huygens probe Reference Libraries

2004-10-19 04:45:44

Cassini-Huygens Mission -- The Cassini unmanned space probe is intended to study Saturn and its moons. It was launched on October 15, 1997 and is estimated to enter Saturn's orbit on July 1, 2004. The mission is a joined NASA/ESA project. Cassini's principal objectives are to: -- determine the three-dimensional structure and dynamical behavior of the rings -- determine the composition of the satellite surfaces and the geological history of each object -- determine the nature and...

2004-10-19 04:45:41

Saturn's moon Titan -- Titan is the planet Saturn's largest moon. It is larger than either of the planets Mercury or Pluto and is the second-largest moon in the solar system after Ganymede (it was originally thought to be slightly larger than Ganymede, but recent observations have shown that its thick atmosphere caused overestimation of its diameter). Titan was discovered on March 25, 1655 by the Dutch astronomer Christian Huygens, making it one of the first non-terrestrial moons to be...

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Word of the Day
  • Exultant; jubilant; triumphant; on the high horse.
  • Tipsy; slightly intoxicated.
This word may come from the phrase 'to set cock on hoop,' or 'to drink festively.' Its origin otherwise is unclear. A theory, according to the Word Detective, is that it's a 'transliteration of the French phrase 'coq a huppe,' meaning a rooster displaying its crest ('huppe') in a pose of proud defiance.' Therefore, 'cock-a-hoop' would 'liken a drunken man to a boastful and aggressive rooster.'