What did the probe find on the planet 1.28 billion away from the earth? Exciting scientists
In this paper, I participated in the series of solicitations of the great astronomy and Astronautics of Recordunkown science
The solar system is the mother galaxy of the earth’s existence. After human beings stepped out of the earth, they began to explore the solar system endlessly. There are two important exploration tasks for human beings to go out of the earth. One is to look for earth like planets similar to the earth, the other is to look for extraterrestrial life and extraterrestrial civilization.
Although hundreds of earth like planets similar to the earth have been discovered outside the solar system through astronomical telescopes, it is still impossible for human science and technology to reach these planets for detailed exploration, and it is impossible to know whether these planets are suitable for human survival and whether there is life and civilization.
If human beings want to search for and explore extraterrestrial life, their main goal is still to put it in the solar system. An important condition for the birth of life is the existence of organic matter, and there must be an atmosphere on the planet. The atmosphere plays an important role in the birth of life on a planet. It can effectively block the invasion of cosmic rays and protect the planet from forming its own ecosystem .
Therefore, the planet with atmosphere in the solar system has become the focus of scientists’ exploration. Mars, the planet most explored by human beings, has a thin atmosphere. Therefore, scientists also have great expectations for this planet, hoping to find extraterrestrial life on Mars.
In addition to Mars, there is another planet in the solar system with a very thick atmosphere and rich organic matter. This planet is not the eight major planets. It is a satellite of Saturn, Titan. It is the largest of Saturn’s satellites and the second largest in the solar system.
As early as when Voyager was going out of the solar system, it had been detected that there was a thick atmosphere when it passed Titan. Since then, this mysterious satellite has also entered the field of vision of scientists. In order to explore more details of this satellite, scientists launched the Cassini spacecraft. In November 2004, the probe swept Titan and captured a clearer picture of Titan At this time, the fact that Titan has a thick atmosphere is confirmed.
Since then, the Cassini probe has been flying around Titan for many times, and has a preliminary understanding of it. After the spacecraft sent the photos and data of Titan back to earth, scientists were excited. Why? What did the probe find on Titan?
It turns out that the probe found a huge liquid lake on Titan, but the composition of the lake is not what we think of as liquid water, but liquid methane. The probe also found a large methane cloud in Titan’s atmosphere. It can be seen that Titan has formed its own ecosystem under its thick atmosphere. Methane circulates back and forth through the surface and clouds, similar to the rainfall on earth, except that the rainfall on Titan is liquid methane.
Scientists are very excited about the discovery of Titan for two reasons. One reason is because of energy. As we all know, the development of human science and technology and human survival cannot do without energy. However, the energy on the earth is limited. With the rapid development of human science and technology, energy consumption is also increasing. In the future, we are bound to face the danger of energy depletion.
Scientists have begun to transfer the way of obtaining energy to space gradually. In the future, mankind will also open the era of space mining to obtain energy from space to meet the development of human beings. Methane is an important energy source. Although the earth’s reserves of this kind of energy are abundant, it is insignificant compared with Titan.
Titan has so much methane that it has formed a methane ocean, which shows how huge the reserves are. Because Titan is blocked by a thick atmosphere, and the current technology of human beings is unable to send the detector to the surface of Titan for detailed detection, what we get is only a fuzzy data. It is possible that the real methane Ocean on the surface of Titan is far larger than we thought.
Human beings have not yet opened the era of space mining, and have found such a huge natural energy planet, which naturally makes scientists very excited. The methane reserves of Titan can meet the needs of human development for many years. As long as human science and technology go further and have the ability to exploit Titan methane, it is believed that it will have a great role in alleviating the energy crisis of human beings.
Another reason scientists are excited is that Titan has the possibility of life. Maybe many people think that Titan has no liquid water and no oxygen, so how can life be born. In fact, with the deepening of scientists’ understanding of life, life forms have long been not confined to the life level of the earth.
The condition for the birth of life is to have rich organic matter. As long as there is a large amount of organic matter in a planet, there is the possibility of the birth of life. Curiosity has discovered the existence of methane in the atmosphere twice, which makes scientists have more expectations for the existence of life on Mars. So Titan is a methane world, and methane is an important organic matter. Does that also mean that Titan has a higher possibility of life?
Scientists guess that the possibility of life on Titan is greater than that on Mars. If there is life on Titan, it will be very different from life on earth. Life on earth mainly lives on oxygen and water, while life on Titan mainly lives on methane. These are two completely different forms of life.
If we find extraterrestrial life on Titan in the future, it will be of great significance to our understanding of life and our journey of exploring extraterrestrial life. Titan is very important to human beings. In the future, scientists will send more advanced detectors to Titan, or even land on Titan to get more data about its surface.
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