FIRST OBSERVATION IN THE SOUTH OF TITAN'S FAR-INFRARED 220 cm(-1) CLOUD

Donald E. Jennings*, C. M. Anderson, R. E. Samuelson, F. M. Flasar, C. A. Nixon, G. L. Bjoraker, P. N. Romani, R. K. Achterberg, V. Cottini, B. E. Hesman, V. G. Kunde, R. C. Carlson, R. de Kok, A. Coustenis, S. Vinatier, G. Bampasidis, N. A. Teanby, S. B. Calcutt

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)

17 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

An emission feature at 220 cm(-1) which has been attributed to a cloud of condensed material in Titan's winter stratosphere has been seen for the first time in the south. This feature had previously been found only at high northern latitudes during northern winter and spring. The material emitting at 220 cm(-1), as yet unidentified, may be volatiles associated with nitrile gases that accumulate in the absence of ultraviolet sunlight. Not detected as recently as 2012 February, the 220 cm(-1) feature clearly appeared at the south pole in Cassini spectra recorded on 2012 July 24, indicating a rapid onset of the emission. This is the first indication of the winter buildup of condensation in the southern stratosphere that has been expected as the south pole moves deeper into shadow. In the north the 220 cm(-1) feature continued to decrease in intensity with a half-life of 3 years.

Original languageEnglish
Article number15
Number of pages4
JournalAstrophysical Journal Letters
Volume761
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 10 Dec 2012

Keywords

  • molecular processes
  • planets and satellites: atmospheres
  • planets and satellites: composition
  • planets and satellites: individual (Titan)
  • radiation mechanisms: thermal
  • STRATOSPHERIC AEROSOLS
  • TEMPORAL VARIATIONS
  • SPECTRAL RANGE
  • CASSINI
  • ATMOSPHERE
  • WINTER
  • TEMPERATURES
  • SPECTROMETER
  • PROFILES
  • NITRILES

Projects

Nick Teanby's Leverhulme Prize

Teanby, N. A.

1/03/111/03/14

Project: Research

Mars and Titan's atmosphere and interior

Teanby, N. A.

1/07/101/10/13

Project: Research

Cite this

Jennings, D. E., Anderson, C. M., Samuelson, R. E., Flasar, F. M., Nixon, C. A., Bjoraker, G. L., Romani, P. N., Achterberg, R. K., Cottini, V., Hesman, B. E., Kunde, V. G., Carlson, R. C., de Kok, R., Coustenis, A., Vinatier, S., Bampasidis, G., Teanby, N. A., & Calcutt, S. B. (2012). FIRST OBSERVATION IN THE SOUTH OF TITAN'S FAR-INFRARED 220 cm(-1) CLOUD. Astrophysical Journal Letters, 761(1), [15]. https://doi.org/10.1088/2041-8205/761/1/L15