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Posted by on Dec 13, 2012 in Science |

Cassini detected a “Nile” on Titan

The international mission Cassini seems to have discovered what scientists have defined as an “alien version of the Nile”, a river valley on Saturn’s moon, Titan . An enclave filled with liquid and believe that would stretch more than 400 miles from their “heads” to a great sea.

This is the first time that the images reveal a system of this type, a vast river with the highest resolution of any point outside the Earth. According to scientists, the river would be full of liquid, as appears dark along its entire length in the image of high resolution radar, indicating a smooth surface. For Jani Radebaugh, Cassini team:

Although there are some short meanders, righteousness Relative River Valley suggests that traces of at least one failure, similar to other large rivers flowing into the southern edge of this same sea of Titan. Such faults, fractures in the bedrock of Titan, can not involve plate tectonics, as on Earth, but still results in the opening of basins and maybe to the formation of giant sea itself.

is the only other world I know you have stable liquid on its surface. While the Earth’s hydrological cycle depends on water, Titan cycle is equivalent hydrocarbons such as ethane and methane.

And is that the visible light images Cassini’s cameras in late 2010 revealed obscured regions after rains. Two years ago, in 2008, the visual and infrared mapping spectrometer on Cassini had confirmed the presence of liquid ethane in a lake in the southern hemisphere of Titan, an enclave known as Ontario Lacus.

Nicolas Altobelli, project scientist, just an analysis explaining the importance of the discovery of the river:

This river captured by Cassini offers us another fantastic snapshot of a world in motion, it is suggested for the first time from the images of the channels and gullies captured by ESA’s Huygens probe during its descent to the surface of the Moon in 2005.

The mission is a cooperative project of NASA, ESA and ASI, the Italian space agency.

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