Exploration missions to Saturn’s moon Titan have been speeding up due to the striking similarities between its atmosphere and the earth’s. From the clouds to the upper atmospheric layer, there is are a lot of similar features which excite the space explorers. But everything is not quite friendly at Titan, making the task of exploration very tricky and requiring creativity and imagination.
One of these difficulties is that the moon has liquid methane oceans, making it practically inhabitable. And although a human being might never be able to land there, NASA is building a robotic submarine to launch an exploratory mission for possible signs of life.
Theoretically, the existence liquid methane oceans indicate that no life can survive in those conditions, but the fact that the gas hasn’t been totally destroyed by the sunlight also puts light on another possibility. By researcher’s estimates, the sunlight hitting Titan should have destroyed all of the methane in 10 million years, but the presence of some reserves indicate that there can be organisms that are replenishing the reservoirs, just like they do on Earth.
And add the similar atmosphere to that of Earth, and you have every possibility of a life-habitable ecosystem. Given that, NASA is looking to complete an unmanned submarine called Titan Sub which would be able to explore the methane oceans safely. The mission that will send the submarine is called “Titan Mare Explorer” (TiME), which is projected to be completed in 2038. The event is still a long time off, but the project sound exciting nevertheless.
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