Cassini discovers lakes on Titan; Can scientists find life on Saturn's moon?


A new study has claimed the existence of giant lakes on Saturn's moon Titan and mentioned about methane rain, which used to shower on Titan. As per the researchers, such rains were capable of filling lakes as much as 330 feet deep.

Researchers made this conclusion after analyzing the data sent by the NASA's Cassini spacecraft in 2017 during a close flyby.

"Every time we make discoveries on Titan, Titan becomes more and more mysterious. But these new measurements help give an answer to a few key questions. We can actually now better understand the hydrology of Titan," said Marco Mastrogiuseppe, a Cassini radar scientist at Caltech and the lead author of the study in a recent statement.

The study report also suggested that the hydrologic cycle on Titan is very similar to the one which exist on earth. But, in Titan, the clouds are made up of methane and ethane and due to the extremely low temperature, these hydrocarbons stay in liquid form.

"It is as if you looked down on the Earth's North Pole and could see that North America had a completely different geologic setting for bodies of liquid than Asia does," said Jonathan Lunine, co-author of the study about the hydrologic cycle on Titan.

Experts now believe that Titan might be harbouring methane-based alien life forms in these water bodies.

A few weeks ago, Dr Amanda Hendrix, a top scientist at NASA had revealed that Titan is the hottest searching spot to find alien life outside the earth. As per Amanda Hendrix, Titan is an ocean world, and it has water bodies both on the surface and subsurface.

"Ocean worlds may represent the best possible, in our solar system, of finding life. We need to understand whether these oceans are habitable and if so, whether these oceans actually host life. Titan is a very unique ocean world because it has both an ocean at the subsurface and it also has liquid hydrocarbon lakes on the surface," said Amanda Hendrix, reports.

These findings were published in the journal Astronomy.