MAR 27, 2016 10:19 AM PDT

NASA's Cassini Mission Unveils Tallest Peak on Moon Titan

NASA’s Cassini mission is proving to be quite useful in learning more about the Saturnian system. Cassini has just allowed astronomers to identify the height of the tallest peak on Titan, the largest of all of Saturn’s moons.
 
Estimated to tower up as high as 10,948 feet, Titan’s tallest peak is located inside of the moon’s Mithrim Montes, a trio group of mountainous ridges. Astronomers believe this is the highest peak that they’re likely to spot before the Cassini mission ends in September 2017.
 

NASA says a peak in the Mithrim Montes on Titan is the tallest on the entire moon.


Discovered by way of Cassini’s radar equipment, the tall peak was found during a recent study of the moon and was presented at the 47th annual Lunar and Planetary Science Conference in The Woodlands, Texas.
 
Comparatively, the tallest peak on Earth is Mount Everest, which is 29,028 feet in the air.
 
Astronomers are also realizing that Titan’s tallest elevations are found mostly around the moon’s equator, which is an interesting quality.
 
"As explorers, we're motivated to find the highest or deepest places, partly because it's exciting. But Titan's extremes also tell us important things about forces affecting its evolution," said Jani Radebaugh, a Cassini radar team member who led the study.
 
On Earth, creating such tall elevations typically takes the work of tectonic activity. Tectonic plates must slam into each other, and the forces cause the Earth to grow upwards against gravity.
 
On Titan, the harder surface is believed to float atop a surface-wide ocean similar to that of Enceladus, so tectonic activity would work somewhat similarly. On the other hand, Titan has a softer surface composition than the Earth does, which is why scientists don’t really believe Titan will ever have peaks as tall as those on Earth.
 
NASA notes that researchers will now spend time trying to figure out what causes this kind of tectonic activity on Titan since the makeup of the spatial body is significantly different from that of Earth.

Source: NASA

About the Author
  • Fascinated by scientific discoveries and media, Anthony found his way here at LabRoots, where he would be able to dabble in the two. Anthony is a technology junkie that has vast experience in computer systems and automobile mechanics, as opposite as those sound.
You May Also Like
OCT 31, 2018
Space & Astronomy
OCT 31, 2018
Do You Have What it Takes to be an Astronaut?
Have you ever wanted to become an astronaut? If yes, then you’re not alone. Being able to experience zero gravity is a mutual interest among individu...
NOV 04, 2018
Space & Astronomy
NOV 04, 2018
Roscosmos Discerns Cause of Faulty Soyuz Launch, Expects to Resume Launches
Just last month, a Russian Soyuz spacecraft poised to send an American astronaut and a Russian cosmonaut to the International Space Station failed mid-flig...
NOV 26, 2018
Space & Astronomy
NOV 26, 2018
NASA's InSight Lander Safely Touches Down on Mars
If you’ve been paying any attention to NASA lately, then you’ve undoubtedly heard about the space agency’s InSight mission for Mars. NASA...
NOV 28, 2018
Space & Astronomy
NOV 28, 2018
NASA Lucy Mission to Visit Jupiter's Trojan Asteroids is Poised to Launch in 2021
Why are we here, and where did we come from? Humankind has been asking these questions since the dawn of time, but legitimate answers appear to be highly e...
DEC 19, 2018
Space & Astronomy
DEC 19, 2018
Say Hello to Farout, the Farthest Object Ever Observed in the Solar System
When most people think about the solar system, they envision all the planets and everything in between – typically as far out as Pluto – but it...
DEC 30, 2018
Space & Astronomy
DEC 30, 2018
Everything NASA's InSight Lander Has Accomplished Since Landing on Mars
It’s only been about a month since NASA’s InSight lander touched down on the Martian surface, but it has already accomplished a plethora of pre...
Loading Comments...