Titan discovery gets us closer to methane-based alien life

  Titan discovery gets us closer to methane-based alien life   A new paper published today on “Science Advances” provides the first indisputable evidence of the presence of a molecule – acrylonitrile –  on Titan which Cornell University researchers theorized could be key to life on the methane-based, oxygen-free moon of Saturn. Chemical and biological […]

In a cosmic hit-and-run, icy Saturn moon may have flipped

Media Note: Images can be viewed and downloaded at https://cornell.box.com/v/Enceladus. ITHACA, N.Y. – Enceladus – a large icy, oceanic moon of Saturn –  may have flipped, the possible victim of an out-of-this-world wallop. While combing through data collected by NASA’s Cassini mission during flybys of Enceladus, astronomers from Cornell University, the University of Texas and […]

Saturn’s bulging core implies moons younger than thought

ITHACA, N.Y. – Freshly harvested data from NASA’s Cassini mission reveals that the ringed planet’s moons may be younger than previously thought. “All of these Cassini mission measurements are changing our view of the Saturnian system, as it turns our old theories upside down,” said Radwan Tajeddine, Cornell University research associate in astronomy and a […]

Chemical trail on Titan may be key to prebiotic conditions

ITHACA, N.Y. – NASA’s Cassini and Huygens missions have provided a wealth of data about chemical elements found on Saturn’s moon Titan, and Cornell scientists have uncovered a chemical trail that suggests prebiotic conditions may exist there. Titan, Saturn’s largest moon, features terrain with Earthlike attributes such as lakes, rivers and seas, although filled with […]

Saturn’s bulging core implies moons younger than thought

Freshly harvested data from NASA’s Cassini mission reveals that Saturn’s bulging core and twisting gravitational forces are leading some astronomers to believe that the ringed planet’s moons are younger than previously thought. “All of these Cassini mission measurements are changing our view of the Saturnian system, as it turns our old theories upside down,” said […]

Astrophysicists and Cassini team members available to speak on flyby of Saturn moon

Two Cassini team members and astrophysicists at Cornell University are available for interviews following the historic flight of the Cassini spacecraft by Enceladus – one of Saturn’s moons – on Wednesday in an effort to detect clues of life on the planet. The spacecraft will try to sample vapor and frozen particle from Enceladus’ icy […]

Under Saturnian moon’s icy crust lies a ‘global’ ocean

ITHACA, N.Y. – Cornell University researchers have learned that a global ocean lies beneath the moon’s thick icy crust by measuring with precision the tiny wobbles of Saturn’s moon Enceladus – whose cosmic quavers are detectable only in high-resolution images taken by NASA’s Cassini spacecraft. Cornell planetary scientists have analyzed more than seven years worth […]