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To aid in the physical interpretation of planetary radii constrained through observations of transit-ing planets, or eventually direct detections, we compute model radii of pure hydrogen-helium, water, rock, and iron planets, along with various mixtures. Masses ranging from 0.01 Earth masses to 10 Jupiter masses at orbital distances of 0.02 to 10 AU are(More)
Three decades of weather records at meteorological stations near Death Valley National Park are analyzed in an attempt to gauge the frequency of conditions that might form and erase the famous trails of wind-blown rocks in the mud of Racetrack Playa. Trail formation requires the playa to be wet, followed by strong winds and/or freezing conditions. Weather(More)
Titan was once thought to have global oceans of light hydrocarbons on its surface, but after 40 close flybys of Titan by the Cassini spacecraft, it has become clear that no such oceans exist. There are, however, features similar to terrestrial lakes and seas, and widespread evidence for fluvial erosion, presumably driven by precipitation of liquid methane(More)
Although there is evidence that liquids have flowed on the surface at Titan's equator in the past, to date, liquids have only been confirmed on the surface at polar latitudes, and the vast expanses of dunes that dominate Titan's equatorial regions require a predominantly arid climate. We report the detection by Cassini's Imaging Science Subsystem of a large(More)
Article is made available in accordance with the publisher's policy and may be subject to US copyright law. Please refer to the publisher's site for terms of use. The MIT Faculty has made this article openly available. Please share how this access benefits you. Your story matters. ABSTRACT Cassini/VIMS T85 observations of a solar specular reflection off of(More)
The Kepler mission was designed to determine the frequency of Earth-sized planets in and near the habitable zone of Sun-like stars. The habitable zone is the region where planetary temperatures are suitable for water to exist on a planet's surface. During the first 6 weeks of observations, Kepler monitored 156,000 stars, and five new exoplanets with sizes(More)
Observations from the Cassini Visual and Infrared Mapping Spectrometer show an anomalously bright spot on Titan located at 80 degrees W and 20 degrees S. This area is bright in reflected light at all observed wavelengths, but is most noticeable at 5 microns. The spot is associated with a surface albedo feature identified in images taken by the Cassini(More)
Observations of Saturn's satellite Enceladus using Cassini's Visual and Infrared Mapping Spectrometer instrument were obtained during three flybys of Enceladus in 2005. Enceladus' surface is composed mostly of nearly pure water ice except near its south pole, where there are light organics, CO2, and amorphous and crystalline water ice, particularly in the(More)
Introduction: The VIMS imaging spectrometer onboard CASSINI provides hyperspectral images of Titan in 352 spectral channels from 0.3 to 5.1 µm [1]. A giant cloud system covering the north pole of Titan was observed in December 2006 using infrared wavelengths. We report here on the processing and analysis of the corresponding VIMS data. (T22 flyby), VIMS(More)