APOD: Huygens: Titan Descent Movie (2013 Jan 21)

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APOD: Huygens: Titan Descent Movie (2013 Jan 21)

Post by APOD Robot » Mon Jan 21, 2013 5:11 am

Image Huygens: Titan Descent Movie

Explanation: What would it look like to land on Saturn's moon Titan? The European Space Agency's Huygens probe set down on the Solar System's cloudiest moon in 2005, and a time-lapse video of its descent images was created. Huygens separated from the robotic Cassini spacecraft soon after it achieved orbit around Saturn in late 2004 and began approaching Titan. For two hours after arriving, Huygens plummeted toward Titan's surface, recording at first only the shrouded moon's opaque atmosphere. The computerized truck-tire sized probe soon deployed a parachute to slow its decent, pierced the thick clouds, and began transmitting images of a strange surface far below never before seen in visible light. Landing in a dried sea and surviving for 90 minutes, Huygen's return unique images of a strange plain of dark sandy soil strewn with smooth, bright, fist-sized rocks of ice.

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Re: APOD: Huygens: Titan Descent Movie (2013 Jan 21)

Post by Ann » Mon Jan 21, 2013 5:48 am

Caramel custard.

Just sayin'.


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Re: APOD: Huygens: Titan Descent Movie (2013 Jan 21)

Post by Boomer12k » Mon Jan 21, 2013 8:27 am

Nice animation.

Another desolate destination with a lonely probe waiting for company.


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Re: APOD: Huygens: Titan Descent Movie (2013 Jan 21)

Post by nujjer » Mon Jan 21, 2013 8:38 am

Ann wrote: Caramel custard.

Just sayin'.


Ann

Thus solving the problem of sustenance for future space travelers... The custard mines of Titan :ssmile:

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Re: APOD: Huygens: Titan Descent Movie (2013 Jan 21)

Post by JohnD » Mon Jan 21, 2013 8:40 am

If that's anything like the jam butty mines of Knottyash, there IS life there but not as we know it, Ken.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JGor7ZyCawI

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Re: APOD: Huygens: Titan Descent Movie (2013 Jan 21)

Post by nstahl » Mon Jan 21, 2013 10:58 am

1. I presume the shadow soon after landing was the parachute. Did they have a method to insure it wouldn't drape over the lander?

2. There was a momentary wavy effect; I'm assuming that was real and not a result of processing. ?

3. Apparently this was put together from the 350 pictures received from the spinning lander. It must have been quite a job. My respects to those who did it.

4. It appears the camera moved enough to look around that small rock. Was the camera really capable of that or was it somehow made up digitally?

I hadn't seen this before; great AMOD. Thanks to all involved.

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Re: APOD: Huygens: Titan Descent Movie (2013 Jan 21)

Post by nstahl » Mon Jan 21, 2013 11:28 am

Ok, third time I kept an eye on the legend, lower right. It was the parachute shadow, the waves were a heated air effect and it was a "simulated area". Which still leaves some of my questions.

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Re: APOD: Huygens: Titan Descent Movie (2013 Jan 21)

Post by JohnD » Mon Jan 21, 2013 11:47 am

As the whole video was headed by a page that called it a "simulation", I would not take anything shown as reality, but the best approximation given the images the Huyghens returned. The cameras on the probe were static and witha fixed focal lenght, so all that panning and zooming around was 'virtual'.

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Re: APOD: Huygens: Titan Descent Movie (2013 Jan 21)

Post by ELLIE » Mon Jan 21, 2013 12:37 pm

Awesome pictures.
Awesome music.
More, please, of both.

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Re: APOD: Huygens: Titan Descent Movie (2013 Jan 21)

Post by RedFishBlueFish » Mon Jan 21, 2013 12:43 pm

Launched from earth Oct 1997, landed on Titan in Jan 2005. It was predicted to get 30 minutes of data from the surface - instead it lasted 90 min.

Truly amazing!

To restore a sense of proportion: Half of the data transmitted were never received, as someone forgot to program one of the two data receiver channels to turn on, and no one on the engineering or management teams noticed this. At least ONE was turned on, it could have been worse ...

... putting one in mind of the loss of the Mars Climate Orbiter because of Lockheed Martin's simple math errors, NASA's inadequate oversight of the construction process and the management team dismissing the observations of at least two of the navigators who noted altitude discrepancies at a time it might have been possible to save the spacecraft.

Still best to have a person at the pointy end. Though, admittedly, not too many pilots would want to sign up for a trip to Titan anytime soon.

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Re: APOD: Huygens: Titan Descent Movie (2013 Jan 21)

Post by neufer » Mon Jan 21, 2013 1:40 pm

Ann wrote:

I've flaune there, myself!

<<The English word "flan" and the earlier forms "flaune" & "flawn" come from Old French flaon (modern flan).>>
Boomer12k wrote:
Another desolate destination with a lonely probe waiting for company.
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Re: APOD: Huygens: Titan Descent Movie (2013 Jan 21)

Post by Boomer12k » Mon Jan 21, 2013 1:40 pm

Redfishbluefish...
"Still best to have a person at the pointy end. Though, admittedly, not too many pilots would want to sign up for a trip to Titan anytime soon."

I'll gladly go tomorrow. They don't even have to PAY me!

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Re: APOD: Huygens: Titan Descent Movie (2013 Jan 21)

Post by Boomer12k » Mon Jan 21, 2013 1:43 pm

neufer wrote:
Ann wrote:

I've flaune there, myself!

<<The English word "flan" and the earlier forms "flaune" & "flawn" come from Old French flaon (modern flan).>>
Boomer12k wrote:
Another desolate destination with a lonely probe waiting for company.


Yes, wouldn't mind probing it with my fork...er...dessert fork at that.

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Re: APOD: Huygens: Titan Descent Movie (2013 Jan 21)

Post by orin stepanek » Mon Jan 21, 2013 1:49 pm

I enjoyed the video! 8-)
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Re: APOD: Huygens: Titan Descent Movie (2013 Jan 21)

Post by BDanielMayfield » Mon Jan 21, 2013 1:55 pm

Titan, Titan, depending on point of view, it could either be an environmentalists worst nightmare, or an oil man’s dream. Some kind of a mythical frigid hell, or a valuable pit stop to the stars. I prefer being an optimist. Perhaps someday Titan’s super abundant hydrocarbons will become useful to humankind for fuel and or other chemical needs in the outer solar system.

(Yes, I know, to use the hydrocarbons for fuel you would need to bring an oxidizer, but being an optimist, I like to look at the glass as half full.) :)
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Re: APOD: Huygens: Titan Descent Movie (2013 Jan 21)

Post by Steve Dutch » Mon Jan 21, 2013 2:21 pm

That flat expanse in the middle distance certainly looks like standing liquid. Not only is it flat, but rocks in it appear flattened and distorted as they would look if covered by a liquid.

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Re: APOD: Huygens: Titan Descent Movie (2013 Jan 21)

Post by RedFishBlueFish » Mon Jan 21, 2013 2:25 pm

Boomer12k wrote:Redfishbluefish...
"Still best to have a person at the pointy end. Though, admittedly, not too many pilots would want to sign up for a trip to Titan anytime soon."

I'll gladly go tomorrow. They don't even have to PAY me!

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To actually consider such a trip seems to me an OTE even less appealing than to RON in the Big Empty.

Though I do think that humaned space exploration is important.

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Re: APOD: Huygens: Titan Descent Movie (2013 Jan 21)

Post by elewhale2 » Mon Jan 21, 2013 2:55 pm

Why is it these scientists HAVE to use centuries old classical music audios? Oh, I didn't check the date. Perhaps it was launched in 1820. Or maybe it was launched recently and landed in 1820. I guess it was a time travel probe.

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Re: APOD: Huygens: Titan Descent Movie (2013 Jan 21)

Post by owlice » Mon Jan 21, 2013 3:07 pm

I thought the music selection was GREAT; Beethoven totally rocks! The orchestral performance could have been better, however. And I'll point out that though the music was written in the early 1800s, obviously the audio itself is of recent vintage.

But taste in music is of course individual. If you don't like the music used here, you can create your own video, and then secure the rights to use whatever music you'd like. There's a video of Cassini images accompanied by Nine Inch Nails (another great music selection!); perhaps you'd prefer that if you don't want to go to the trouble of creating your own version.
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Re: APOD: Huygens: Titan Descent Movie (2013 Jan 21)

Post by Mork » Mon Jan 21, 2013 3:31 pm

Nice, but why wait seven years to show this to us?

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Re: APOD: Huygens: Titan Descent Movie (2013 Jan 21)

Post by Chris Peterson » Mon Jan 21, 2013 3:36 pm

BDanielMayfield wrote:Titan, Titan, depending on point of view, it could either be an environmentalists worst nightmare, or an oil man’s dream. Some kind of a mythical frigid hell, or a valuable pit stop to the stars. I prefer being an optimist. Perhaps someday Titan’s super abundant hydrocarbons will become useful to humankind for fuel and or other chemical needs in the outer solar system.

(Yes, I know, to use the hydrocarbons for fuel you would need to bring an oxidizer, but being an optimist, I like to look at the glass as half full.) :)
Burning hydrocarbons for energy is primitive, in addition to being climatically unsustainable if the fuel isn't being generated at the same rate it is being burned (otherwise you interfere with the carbon cycle).

I would assume that by the time we have the technology to commercially travel to places like Titan, we'll be using far more efficient energy sources, and will have little use for naturally occurring hydrocarbons. I agree they might be used as a raw material for some sort of chemical processing, however. Obviously, if we're ever to settle other parts of the Solar System, most materials will need to be locally obtained.
Chris

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Re: APOD: Huygens: Titan Descent Movie (2013 Jan 21)

Post by neufer » Mon Jan 21, 2013 3:49 pm

Chris Peterson wrote:
I would assume that by the time we have the technology to commercially travel to places like Titan, we'll be using far more efficient energy sources, and will have little use for naturally occurring hydrocarbons.
You're not going all optimistic on us in your old age are you, Chris :?:
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Re: APOD: Huygens: Titan Descent Movie (2013 Jan 21)

Post by orin stepanek » Mon Jan 21, 2013 3:55 pm

Mork wrote:Nice, but why wait seven years to show this to us?
You might want to look at these!http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap060508.html
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Re: APOD: Huygens: Titan Descent Movie (2013 Jan 21)

Post by Chris Peterson » Mon Jan 21, 2013 4:00 pm

neufer wrote:
Chris Peterson wrote:
I would assume that by the time we have the technology to commercially travel to places like Titan, we'll be using far more efficient energy sources, and will have little use for naturally occurring hydrocarbons.
You're not going all optimistic on us in your old age are you, Chris :?:
Well, actually I think that our continued use of hydrocarbons on Earth is going to bring down civilization far enough that it will be a distant future before we see any manned exploration of the Solar System. So I guess that would be a "no".
Chris

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Re: APOD: Huygens: Titan Descent Movie (2013 Jan 21)

Post by Mactavish » Mon Jan 21, 2013 6:09 pm

RedFishBlueFish wrote: To actually consider such a trip seems to me an OTE even less appealing than to RON in the Big Empty.
OTE?? RON?? Say what?