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Home https://server7.kproxy.com/servlet/redirect.srv/sruj/smyrwpoii/p2/ Science https://server7.kproxy.com/servlet/redirect.srv/sruj/smyrwpoii/p2/ The moon of Saturn Titan may be inlaid with alien crystals

The moon of Saturn Titan may be inlaid with alien crystals



  A shimmer of color, near the infrared view of Titan's northern hemisphere, collected by NASA's Cassini spacecraft, showing the seas and lakes of the Moon. The orange areas near some of them can be depositions of organic evaporation minerals abandoned by the withdrawal of liquid hydrocarbons. Credit: NASA / JPL-Caltech / Institute of Space Sciences </p>
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<p>  The ice sheets of the moon of Saturn Titan may be inlaid with strange, non-terrestrial minerals, according to a new study here. </p>
<p> their lab has discovered new compounds and minerals not found on Earth, including a solid acetylene and butane co-crystal. </p>
<p>  Acetylene and butane exist on the Earth as gases and are commonly used for welding and stove fuels. At titanium, with its extremely low temperatures, acetylene and butane are solid and combine to form crystals, according to the new study. Morgan Kabel, of the NASA Laboratory of Reactive Movement at the California Institute of Technology, who will present the new study Monday at the Scientific Conference on Astrobiology for 201<div class=
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Titan Lakes are filled with liquid hydrocarbons. Previous research using images and data collected during Cassini's mission has shown that lakes in the dry regions of the moon near the equator contain traces of vaporised material such as bath rings.

Like the lab conditions, the researchers start with a custom made cryostat, a device that keeps things cold. They filled the cryostat with liquid nitrogen to lower the temperature. Then they slightly warmed the chamber, so the nitrogen turned into gas, which is mostly what the atmosphere of Titan contains. They then thrown into Titan, methane and ethane, as well as other carbon-containing molecules, and searched for what was being formed.

The first thing left out of their hydrocarbon soup was the crystals of benzene. Benzol is perhaps best known as a component of gasoline and is a snowflake molecule made of a hexagonal ring of carbon atoms. But Titan's gasoline was surprising: the molecules were rearranged and allowed the ethane molecules to create a co-crystal.

The researchers then discovered the co-crystal of acetylene and butane, which is probably much more common in titanium than benzene crystals.

In the cold climate of the moon, co-crystals of acetylene-butane can form rings around the moon lakes as liquid hydrocarbons evaporate and the minerals fall – at the same time. According to Cable, salts can form peel on the shores of the Earth's lakes and the seas.

To confirm that Titan has rings of baths with coccysts and other undiscovered hydrocarbon crystals, scientists will have to wait until a spacecraft can say, "We do not know yet whether we have these bath rings, said Cable. "It's hard to see through Titan's turbulent atmosphere."

More Information: "Acetylene Butane Coherent: a Titanium Molecular Molecule"


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