What If Titan Were a Moon of Earth

Titan is the largest moon of Saturn. It is the only moon known to have a dense atmosphere, and the only object in space other than Earth here clear evidence of stable bodies of surface liquid has been found. Titan is the sixth ellipsoidal moon from Saturn. Frequently described as a planet-like moon, Titan is 50% larger than Earth’s Moon, and it is 80% more massive. It is the largest second-moon in the Solar System, after Jupiter’s moon Ganymede and is larger than the smallest planet, Mercury but only 40% as massive. Discovered in 1655 by the Dutch astronomer Christiaan Huygens, Titan was the first known moon of Saturn, and the sixth known planetary satellite(after Earth’s Moon and the four Galilean moons of Jupiter).

Titan orbits Saturn at 20 Saturn radii. From Titan’s surface, Saturn subtends an arc of 5.09 degrees and would appear 11.4 times larger in the sky than the Moon from Earth. Titan is primarily composed of water ice and rocky material. Much as with Venus before the Space Age, the dense opaque atmosphere prevented understanding of Titan’s surface until new information from the Cassini-Huygens mission in 2004, including the discovery of liquid hydrocarbon lakes in Titan’s polar regions. The geologically young surface is generally smooth, with few impact craters, although mountains and several possible cryovolcanoes have been found. The atmosphere of Titan is largely nitrogen minor components lead to the formation of methane and ethane clouds and nitrogen-rich organic smog. Titan is a place of vast lakes, seas, and rivers that are made out of liquid methane and ethane. With its liquids (both surface and subsurface) and robust nitrogen atmosphere, Titan’s methane cycle is analogous to Earth’s water cycle, at the much lower temperature of about 94 K (−179.2 °C). It also has a thick atmosphere 1.5 times thicker than our own on earth. So then, what if this very wide view looking place were to become our moon. So let’s say for some reason something caused it to escape from Saturn’s gravity and it started drifting towards the earth, this means that Titan would get closer to the Sun which would cause some serious changes in Titan. So on Titan way to hear the temperature at one point would rise enough to make the methane in the lakes of Titan to evaporate leaving ethane because ethane has a lower boiling point, but eventually the temperature will also cause for ethane to evaporate leaving no methane and ethane liquids on the surface of Titan. All those seas and rivers would be just gone but they would leave a mark on Titan with lake basin, but the temperature could also create new liquid water lakes through the heating of water ice on its surface. Other ice’s that are present on its surface would also melt creating large liquid oceans. So then Titan comes to earth and this is when unpredictable things would happen because Titan could also crash into the earth and it may not even settle into orbit because even though the moon Luna is smaller than Titan it has a higher surface gravity than Titan. So really moon would likely be stable, but it is uncertain for Titan.

 

let’s say it somehow settles into orbit at around 500,000 kilometers of a distant from Earth Titan would appear a bit bigger than the moon and it would look very hazy. Titan would also reflect the light and be a bit brighter than the moon which would turn night landscapes on earth lightly yellow. Titan and the moon would also create very large tides and waves when they combine, which would make coastal regions on earth less safe. Besides that Titan itself would also experience a lot more changes not only would the lake be gone but it even impact the atmosphere so because the temperature will arise in Titan a lot likely similar to earth. It could cause the atmosphere to escape bit by bit over time. Now that is because when air molecules are heated they are more active and thus more likely to escape from any celestial object in turn causing whole atmospheres to be stripped out. Still that would happen very slowly over time and Titan and it would never fully strip out the atmosphere still it will not be such a hazy and cloudy world as it is. Now when it is cold but it’s not that Titan would be just this pretty object going around earth, it would actually be one of the best places in the whole solar system to colonize with not that much effort. So the evidence through Titans wobbly surface shows that it has a liquid ocean underneath the surface which could be used to create a new atmosphere which in turn would create a pretty nice place to settle in for a while. It would look a lot different from the original Titan, since even color of the atmosphere could change that. Plus it is more likely that as said water ice on its surface would melt creating water lakes and other ices and Titan could melt creating even larger bodies of liquid. Communication would not be such a problem as well since earth and Titan would be so close, but despite that fact Titan would become a lot different from its landscape to atmosphere it would change. So all in all if Titan were to become our moon it would be quite a good thing we humans would have a nice place to permanently live on. it would be like a whole new world that would just remind us of Titan.

Post Author: Shivam

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