content long 23-October-2017 06:04:10

Winners Italy

10-12 years old: The lakes of Titan

 Authors: Alessia Bucci. Alessia Oliva, Ginevra Malpaganti

Dear diary,

in my legal office, a new client has contacted me. He is a scientist who works for NASA. Shortly, he has told me about himself, his work and the reason why he has contacted me. Substantially his partner and he have the opportunity to choose where to send the Cassini spacecraft, the first which has entered the orbit of Saturn, having three possibilities at its disposal: Titan, Enceladus or Saturn. My client had opted for the first choice, unfortunately two partners haven’t reached an agreement and for this reason they quarreled. They must do this work otherwise NASA could ask the damages for the missed job. I have thought that the best way for my client it’s to convince his partner that Titan is the right choice. At this point I will also have to study Titan’s characteristics to help my client.

 21/12/2017

Dear diary,

It’s really cool to do astronomy researches. On Titan everything is to discover! Have you ever heard about it? It is the second largest satellite in the Solar System and the only one with a dense atmosphere. But there’s more, it could be similar to what happened  to the earth’s atmosphere several billion years ago. Even for this satellite weather forecast can be made! The scenery is pretty scary, because of the presence of clouds made up of methane from which the strange greenish coloration depends. On Titan methane rains occur however they are rains different from ours as they have a lower adhesive force. This means that the drop falls much more slowlier and evaporates before reaching the surface . Despite this, the landscape is similar to the earth, because there is a cycle of rains and rivers. In 1655 Huygens using a refracting telescope discovered that Titan is the largest moon of Saturn. All this was possible thanks to the science father Galileo Galilei who was the  first to observe the sky with a telescope, made by himself, he also discovered the beautiful rings of Saturn . So we can say that it is thanks to him if astronomy technology today has evolved allowing us to study the solar system in more detail. For a long time we have been carrying on with questions like :” are we alone in the Universe?” This, dear diary, is a question of the astronomer Frank Drake known for the famous equation that bears his name referring to the possibility of the existence of intelligent extraterrestrial life forms. As I study, i discover more and more things. I will update soon.

22/01/2017

Dear diary,

today is the most important day and as time goes by, I understand that my client has done the right choice. Thanks to him now I love astronomy! If my client will convince his partner it will be because all the people will understand the beauty and the curiosity that this mysterious satellite generates. The Cassini spacecraft will have to go to Titan!


Last Update: 19 May 2017

For further information please contact: SciTech.editorial@esa.int

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