A recent probe by NASA’s Cassini to Saturn found out that its moon- Titan, indicated the presence of explosive volcanoes.
Space Volcanoes: Ever wondered if there are volcanoes in space? Do they erupt? Looks like Saturn’s moon may have volcanoes! A recent probe by NASA’s Cassini to Saturn found out that its moon- Titan, indicated the presence of explosive volcanoes. While space volcanoes were discovered 1979 first, the current features of Titan suggested that the volcanic eruptions on Titan are rather recent and have been continuing. It is to note that according to NASA, other than Earth, moons of Jupiter, Saturn, and Neptune have active volcanoes as of now.
A report by ANI citing a new research paper filed by the Planetary Science Institute in the Journal of Geophysical Research said that the morphological features on Titan pointed out formations of halos, elevated ramparts, islands and some collapsed sections. These are common with volcanic activities going around and studying it revealed the volcanoes are active on Titan.
Charles Wood, co-author of the study told ANI that there is a close association between polar lakes and proposed volcanic craters and this is consistent with any volcanic origin via eruptions and later collapse. Some craters look fresh and that may mean the volcanic activities have been recent on Titan and it is much likely that they have been continuing till today, Wood said. He further said that some evidence for internal heat along with presence of cryovolcanoes which is made through water ice crust into liquid water which erupts on the moon’s surface. “These features are kind of round, have raised rims, and may overlap each other,” Wood added.
Moreover, Wood explained that the shapes of other volcanic landforms are more or less the same as on Earth and Mars and are formed by the explosion, excavation and collapse. According to him, these features are usually at polar regions and near to lakes having methane or nitrogen that can boost the activity. And since these features are fresh, it is likely that the activity is still active today.
For those tracking space related developments, the very idea of explosive volcanoes in space is an exciting prospect to further probe into.