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Titan - the next closest thing to Earth.

  1. Mar 4, 2009 #1
    Can Titan substain human life? Answer: no.
    The temperature on Titan is a freezing -179 degrees C, or 290 degrees F.
    But unlike other moons, Titan, in fact has known bodies of water on it. Which is amazing.
    But sadly, if you ever lived to stand on Titan, the pressure would literally bust your eardrums, and eventually kill you.
    The funny thing is, if you lit a match, or even the tiniest spark on Titan occured, the whole planet would erupt in flames.

    Funny huh?

  2. jcsd
  3. Mar 4, 2009 #2
    Those bodies of liquid are actually believed to be methane, not water....fyi.
  4. Mar 4, 2009 #3
    saturn.jpl.nasa.gov "Bodies of water".
  5. Mar 4, 2009 #4


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    Why do you think that?

    The methane?

    Do you think in the history of Titan there has never been a lightning bolt?

    Combustion requires three components: fuel, heat and oxygen. One of these is not present on Titan (hint: it's not heat either)
  6. Mar 4, 2009 #5


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    What is the point of this? To inform us of the conditions on Titan?

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Titan_(moon [Broken])
    Last edited by a moderator: May 4, 2017
  7. Mar 19, 2009 #6
    Europa is the only moon known to have water. Titan has an atmosphere which is pretty cool but still could not support human life. The only outside life in our solar system would be microorganisms like algae. But we havent found it yet.
  8. Mar 27, 2009 #7


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    I forgot where I read this but apparently, due to the low gravity (0.15 g) and high atmospheric pressure (1.5 atm) on Titan, a person could literally fly by flapping their arms, like swimming I guess.
  9. Mar 27, 2009 #8


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    A google of the site does not turn up that phrase - could you post the actual link where you got it and a fuller quote?
  10. Mar 27, 2009 #9
    While we're at it, I'm just wondering, what would be the closest thing to Earth in our solar system (other than Earth)?
  11. Mar 27, 2009 #10


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    Europa, maybe? Because of the liquid water.
  12. Mar 27, 2009 #11


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    :confused: I'm wondering how low gravity is consistent with high atmospheric pressure. :frown:
  13. Mar 28, 2009 #12


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    As Dave hinted, no oxygen, no inferno. Oxygen is almost surely biogenic. Any primordial oxygen would be rapidly consumed by chemical processes. Only biological organisms [eg, photosynthesizing plants] are capable of replenishing atmospheric oxygen. This is one of the signatures [ozone to be exact] exoplanetary scientists are looking for as evidence of extraterrestrial life.
  14. Mar 28, 2009 #13


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    Titan is the moon of a gas giant.
  15. Mar 29, 2009 #14


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    Different gasses; heavier gasses.
  16. Mar 30, 2009 #15


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    Low temperature means high molecular density.

    P ~ ρgh.

    Titan: A Moon with Atmosphere



    The Atmosphere of Titan

    Measurements of Titan's atmosphere - thickness.

    200 km from ESA data - http://www.esa.int/SPECIALS/Cassini-Huygens/SEMMF2HHZTD_0.html

    http://live.psu.edu/story/6330 [Broken]
    Chandra's observation revealed that the diameter of the X-ray shadow cast by Titan was larger than the diameter of its solid surface. The difference in diameters gives a measurement of about 550 miles (880 kilometers) for the height of the X-ray absorbing region of Titan's atmosphere. The extent of the upper atmosphere is consistent with, or slightly (10 to 15 percent) larger, than that implied by Voyager I observations made at radio, infrared and ultraviolet wavelengths in 1980.

    An X-ray measurement of Titan's atmospheric extent from its transit of the Crab Nebula

    1.5 atm (earth) is not extraordinarily high and divers on earth breath at much greater pressures. Of course, on Titan, just like underwater, one would have to breath oxygen or air from a container.

    I'm curious about the comment that Titan's atmosphere is 1.5 denser as opposed to Titan's atmospheric pressure is 1.5 times that of Earth, or 60% greater (1.6 times?). Since the gravity on Titan is about 0.15 of earth, then if the pressure is 1.5 times that of earth, I would think the density has to be more than 1.5 times that of earth (without accounting for differences in depth of the atmospheres).
    Last edited by a moderator: May 4, 2017
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