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Proposed NASA Mission Would Sail the Seas of Titan

December 19th, 2009 12:18 admin Leave a comment Go to comments

The BBC has a report on a proposal that will be submitted to NASA for funding — a mission to Saturn’s moon Titan that would deposit a lander of its hydrocarbon sea. (We recently discussed the widely circulated photo of sunlight glinting off one of Titan’s seas.) “The scientific team behind the idea is targeting Ligeia Mare, a vast body of liquid methane sited in the high north of Saturn’s largest moon. … ‘It is something that would really capture the imagination,’ said Dr Ellen Stofan, from Proxemy Research, who leads the study team. ‘The story of human exploration on Earth has been one of navigation and seafaring, and the idea that we could explore for the first time an extraterrestrial sea I think would be mind-blowing for most people,’ she told BBC News. … The Titan Mare Explorer (TiME) has already been under study for about two years. It is envisaged as a relatively low-cost endeavor — in the low $400m range. It could launch in January 2016, and make some flybys of Earth and Jupiter to pick up the gravitational energy it would need to head straight at the Saturnian moon for a splash down in June 2023.”

Source: Proposed NASA Mission Would Sail the Seas of Titan

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