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Titan, Moon of Saturn

Titan is a Moon that orbits round the planet Saturn. Its orbit circumference, the total distance it travels round its planetary parent is 7,675,612.02 km. The furthest it gets from its orbital parent (apoasis) is 1,257,055 km. Its mass is estimated/calculated at being 134,552,523,083,241,000,000,000 kg. Its density has been calculated at being 1.882 g/cm3. Its volume is 71,496,320,086 km3.

It was discovered in the year 1655 by C. Huygens.

The orbital period, i.e. the period it takes to complete an orbit round Saturn is 15.95 days. The figure is also known as the sidereel period. The figure comes from N.A.S.A..

The Semi-Major Axis of the orbit is 1,221,865 km, which is the furthest point from the centre to the edge of an elliptical point.

The atmospheric gases within the atmosphere of the object are N2, CH4. The temperature in at the surface is about 94 K.

The equatorial circumference of Titan is 16,177.5 km. The mean radius, that is the average radius of Titan is 2,574.7 km. The surface area of Titan is 83,305,418.53 km2. The surface gravity of the said item is 1.354 m/s2. The average orbit velocity, that is the speed at which it orbits is 20,051.2 km/h.

The orbital inclination, the angle at which Titan orbits in relation to the orbital plane is 0.312 degrees. The orbital eccentricity is 0.0288, it is the degree at which Titan orbits close to a circular (0) orbit as opposed to an elliptical (1) orbit.

Despite its name, Titan is not the largest moon in the solar system but it is larger than our own moon. The largest moon in the Solar System is Ganymede which orbits Jupiter and is only 2% bigger than Titan. Titan is still bigger than Mercury so therefore if Titan was in orbit round the Sun, it could well be classed as a planet provided the other criteria are met.

Titan is tidally locked with the planet and therefore only presents one side of it as it completes an orbit in 15 days. The moon was discovered by Christiaan Huygens so it was apt that when E.S.A. sent a probe to the planet, the part that would land on the planet would be named afer the discoverer.

Titan Atmosphere

Titan is the only moon that has clouds and an atmosphere, although it is not one that could support humans. Titan is larger than our smallest planet, Mercury. As part of Cassini-Huygens mission, the Huygens probe was launched into the atmosphere to discover more about the moon. The picture below is a photo from the Huygens space probe that took a photo of the environment.

How Titan was named

Like so many other celestials moons, the moon is named after the generic term for the children of Ouranos (Uranus) and Gaia in Greek Mythology. The Titans were said to have devoured the limbs of Dionysus, a son of Zeus. In revenge, Zeus launched a lightning bolt at the Titans. From the ashes of the Titans arose humanity.NASA

Titan's atmosphere as taken by Huygens space probe.

Source: N.A.S.A.

Image of the Saturn moon of Titan

Image of the Saturn moon of Titan

Titan Facts

Orbital Circumference7,675,612.02 km
Furthest from parent (Apoasis)1,257,055 km
Mass134,552,523,083,241,000,000,000 kg
Density1.882 g/cm3
Volume71,496,320,086 km3
Year of Discovery1655
DiscovererC. Huygens
Orbital Period15.95
Semi-Major Axis1,221,865 km
Atmosphere GassesN2, CH4
Surface Temperature94 K
Equatorial Circumference16,177.5 km
Mean Radius2,574.7 km
Surface Area83,305,418.53 km2
Surface Gravity1.354 m/s2
Average Orbit Velocity20,051.2 km/h
Orbital Inclination0.312
Orbital Eccentricity0.0288

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