NASA's Cassini Spacecraft captures this view of Saturn's biggest moon, Titan, with Saturn rings in the foreground.
The dense atmosphere of Saturn's largest moon, Titan, can come from organic materials baking in the moon's interior.
Titan captivates scientists for its thick atmosphere ̵
Titan's complex molecules, including organic materials, carbon-containing substances make it a promising place for life to develop. (And a great place where one day can be explored with the help of the robot submarines.) [Titan Landing Pictures by Huygens Spacecraft]
"Titan has no doubt a lot of organic chemistry, so he's an undisputed source of curiosity," Kelly Miller, a researcher at the Southwest Research Institute in Boulder, Colorado, and the lead author of the new job, said in a statement.
"Since Titan is the only moon in our solar system with a significant atmosphere, scientists have long been wondering what its source is," Miller said. "The basic theory is that ammonia ice from comets has been transformed by effects or photochemistry , in nitrogen, to form the atmosphere of Titan. While this may still be an important process, it ignores the effects of what we now know is a very large part of the Comets: complex organic material.
The composition of Titan's atmosphere did not coincide completely with the types of nitrogen and other materials found in comets. Additionally, the 5 percent of Titan's atmosphere, made of methane, raised another question: react quickly to form organisms that will fall to the surface, so how is it filled? Miller's group believes the Rosetta spacecraft has gathered around the comet 67P / Churumov-Gerasimenko, who revealed that the comet is half ice, quarter rock and a quarter of organic material, according to the statement. These materials, present in the early solar system, may also have built Titan. "Comets and primitive bodies in the outer solar system are really interesting, because it is believed that building blocks of the solar system are believed to be," Miller said. said. "These small bodies can be included in larger bodies like Titan, and the dense, rich in organic rock material can be found in its core."