Friday, November 20, 2015

Titan has Developed a Huge South Pole Ice Cloud

NASA’s Cassini spacecraft has detected a massive, never-before-seen icy cloud at the south pole of Saturn’s huge moon Titan.

The newly spotted feature—part of a cloud system known as the south polar vortex—suggests that winter in the southern hemisphere of Titan will be even colder than predicted, scientists said.

The atmospheric signal “looks pretty normal, then BOOM!, increases,” indicating the presence of a brand-new cloud, said Cassini participating scientist Carrie Anderson, of NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland. “I was so excited, I pretty much fell out of my chair.”

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