James Webb Telescope Thrills Scientist With Freaky Cloud On Titan

James Webb Telescope Thrills Scientist With Freaky Cloud On Titan

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Titan, Saturn's largest moon, has experienced a cloudy season.

Saturn's moon Titan is an enigmatic place, resembling Earth in some ways but with a thick, hazy atmosphere dotted with methane clouds and rivers and seas filled with liquid methane and other hydrocarbons instead of water. According to a NASA press release, the James Webb Space Telescope observed two of these clouds on November 4th, exciting scientists.

In their words, "Fantastic! I enjoy the cloud's blatant albedo markings, "In an email included in the statement, Heidi Hammel, a planetary scientist at the Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy and the project lead for the solar system work being done by the James Webb Space Telescope, discussed the contrast between the bright and dark regions of Titan's surface.

Astronomer Conor Nixon of NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Maryland scheduled 15 hours of JWST's first year to be dedicated to studying Titan. Nixon's group had a few specific goals in mind for their investigation of Titan's atmosphere: mapping the haze's distribution and discovering any new gases that might exist.

#jwstimages #jameswebbspacetelescope #saturnmoon

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