Monday, May 02, 2022

Titan ... yet again

Similar to earth but colder, much much colder. :)

For years, scientists haven't been able to explain how these Earth-like landscapes — including sand dunes made of hydrocarbons — formed on Titan's surface. The Moon's sediments are theorized to be composed of solid organic compounds, which are more fragile than the silicate-based sediments found on Earth. That means they shouldn't be able to form such varied structures on the Moon's surface.

The Stanford team studied a type of calcium carbonate sediment called the ooids, which are found on Earth, in a bid to better understand how Titan's surface is so similar to Earth's. They found that it is likely down to wind, seasonal change, and sintering — the process of forming a solid mass of material through heat and pressure without that material melting.

"We hypothesized that sintering — which involves neighboring grains fusing together into one piece — could counterbalance abrasion when winds transport the grains," study lead Mathieu Lapôtre explained in Standord's statement.

Dragonfly awaits ...

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