US space agency NASA has developed a concept for sending a submarine for the exploration of ringed-planet Saturn’s moon Titan, which is known for its mysterious vast lakes of liquid ethane and methane.
NASA Glenn’s COMPASS Team and Applied Research Lab’s researchers displayed a Titan submarine concept at the 2015 edition of Innovative Advanced Concepts (NIAC) Symposium.
The autonomous submersible, called Kracken Mare, is designed in such a way so as to make a 90-day voyage that will cover 2,000 kilometers (1,250 mile), exploring the depths of the vast lake as well as alien marine world.
According to the scientists, the submersible would be spending longer durations under the surface of methane sea. The submersible would be powered by radioisotope generator, which is a source that converts radioactive pellets’ heat into electricity.
The establishment of communication with the Earth would not be possible while the vehicle is submerged. This is the reason why submersible would require making regular ascents to the surface in order to transmit science data.
Titan is the only Saturn moon in the solar system having a remarkable atmosphere that is said to be possessing its methane cycle, just like the water cycle of Earth. The element Methane, existing in a liquid state, rain down on a landscape which is laced with hydrocarbons that forms seas, rivers and valleys.