NASA's Dragonfly to explore Saturn's biggest moon for signs of life

New Dragonfly Mission Flying Landing Sequence Animation

NASA unveiled the latest mission in its New Frontiers program, exploring Saturn's largest moon, Titan, which could potentially host extraterrestrial life. Titan's perplexing rings and chains of carbon are principal to numerous essential biological procedures and may take after the building blocks from which life on Earth originally advanced.

Dragonfly will launch in 2026 and arrive in 2034. The machine will have eight rotor propellers, which will allow it to maneuver like a drone. The probe will then spend at least 2.5 years on Titan and explore around 3,200 mile-wide moon through diverse environments from organic dunes where life, water, and complex organic materials once existed for possibly tens of thousands of years. The moon has lakes of methane, mountains of ice and an ocean below the surface, making it an attractive place to explore whether its environment can support primitive life.

"Additionally, instruments will search for chemical evidence of past or extant life", the statement adds.

"What really excites me about this mission is that Titan has all of the key ingredients needed for life", said Dr Lori Glaze, the director of planetary science at Nasa.

"Visiting this mysterious ocean world could revolutionize what we know about life in the universe", NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine said in a statement.

An illustration showing Dragonfly rotorcraft-lander approaching a site on Titan.

It will first explore the "Shangri-La" dune fields in short flights while also taking samples along the way until it reaches the Selk crater where there is evidence of past liquid water, energy, and organics.

Genoa Bridge Is Demolished, As Explosions Erase A Tragic Artifact
The area will be closed off to the public until 2200 GMT and residents will be allowed back to their homes once the dust settles. A year after the collapse of the Morandi bridge in Genoa demolition experts are preparing to blow up its remains.

The lander could eventually fly more than 175km (108 miles) - almost double the distance travelled to date by all Mars rovers combined. Despite more pressing ambitions like returning to the Moon, launching a new Mars rover, and even planning a manned mission to the Red Planet, NASA announced today that it's already looking for new adventures, and it plans to start with Saturn's moon Titan.

"With the Dragonfly mission, Nasa will once again do what no-one else can do", said the USA space agency's administrator, Jim Bridenstine.

Journal Nature reported that, "Instead of liquid water, Titan has liquid methane". Some organics are produced in clouds and fall to the surface as snow.

This means that the moon's weather and surface processes are similar to those that may have given rise to life our planet.

NASA was torn between sending the Dragonfly to either Titan or to a comet known as 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko, which had been previously visited by the Rosetta spacecraft. Titan is about 886 miles from the Sun having a surface temperature of -290 degrees Fahrenheit. Its surface pressure is also 50 percent higher than Earth's.

"Dragonfly marks the first time NASA will fly a multi-rotor vehicle for science on another planet", the space agency said in Thursday's announcement. Entry is FREE - the deadline is Friday 28th June. Larger than the Mercury, it is the second largest moon after Ganymede (Jupiter's moon) in the whole solar system that has a thick water-ice crust.

"We're absolutely thrilled and ready to jump on it and get going to go to Titan", Turtle said on a NASA webcast.

Related News:

  • NJ residents getting Salmonella from fresh papayas, CDC warns

    NJ residents getting Salmonella from fresh papayas, CDC warns

    Salmonella infection may spread from the intestines to the bloodstream and then to other places in the body. Of 33 ill people with available information, 22 reported being of Hispanic ethnicity.
    Apple Confirms Purchase Of Autonomous Start Up Drive.AI

    Apple Confirms Purchase Of Autonomous Start Up Drive.AI

    In January, Apple cut around 200 employees from the company's vehicle project - called " Project Titan ", as reported by CNBC . In this Saturday June 15, 2019 photo customers leave an Apple store on the 3rd Street Promenade in Santa Monica, Calif.
    US World Cup star Rapinoe accepts House invite after snubbing Trump

    US World Cup star Rapinoe accepts House invite after snubbing Trump

    The invitation and acceptance comes just the week after Rapinoe said she wouldn't accept a team invitation to the White House. The USA is doing GREAT!' The casual brush off made Rapinoe an instant #resistance hit among Trump haters.
  • Alton Towers owner Merlin agrees £5.9bn takeover deal

    Alton Towers owner Merlin agrees £5.9bn takeover deal

    It values the company at about 12 times Merlin's 2018 underlying earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization. As Merlin Entertainments will now merge into Blackstone, the former will no longer be available on the stock market.
    Kara Lawson named assistant coach for Celtics

    Kara Lawson named assistant coach for Celtics

    As a player, she won an Olympic Gold Medal in 2008 as was part of a WNBA championship team with the Sacramento Monarchs in 2005. Kristi Toliver , who plays for the WNBA's Washington Mystics , served as an assistant for the Wizards this past season.
    Pete Alonso sets Mets' rookie home run record

    Pete Alonso sets Mets' rookie home run record

    Later in the fifth inning, Jacob deGrom got his revenge on Hamels when he delivered an RBI single of his own for a 3-1 advantage. The Mets used a barrage of homers to rout the Chicago Cubs (41-35) 10-2, giving them two straight wins in the Windy City.
  • Focus on India's No.4 as England must win to survive

    Focus on India's No.4 as England must win to survive

    Afghanistan's usual blue is spattered with greater amounts of red (as worn by them in their game against England at Manchester). We thought England were probably going to dominate in their own conditions", said Kohli. "Question to all Pakistan fans".
    Johnson misses first cut since 2018 Open Championship, Lashley leads

    Johnson misses first cut since 2018 Open Championship, Lashley leads

    At the 207-yard par-3 ninth, Lahiri hit a tee shot 188 yards at the green, setting himself up for the 14-foot putt for birdie. Johnson wasn't the only big-name golfer to miss the cut though. "It ended up in a bad spot", he said.
    Afghanistan, Pakistan fans clash at Headingley

    Afghanistan, Pakistan fans clash at Headingley

    Are you also in love with Shaheen's bowling spell? On the other hand, Afghanistan is yet to register a victory in CWC 2019. The security personnel had to come to calm things down as the fight started outside Headingley itself during the match.
  • Whitney Houston song officially released for first time

    Whitney Houston song officially released for first time

    The late and the great legend, Whitney Houston , is featured on a handsome new remix of " Higher Love " with Kygo . However, at the time of her death in 2012 at the age of 48, her reputation had been marred by years of drug abuse.
    Japan Prints Out Simple Map for Trump Visualizing Country’s Investment in US

    Japan Prints Out Simple Map for Trump Visualizing Country’s Investment in US

    President trump also took a light-hearted tone during his meeting with Vladimir Putin, joking about election meddling. Instead, the declaration says: "Most importantly, trade and geopolitical tensions have intensified".
    Hong Kong protesters continue to demonstrate as leader hides from public

    Hong Kong protesters continue to demonstrate as leader hides from public

    They spray-painted slogans on the walls, threw eggs at the building and shouted insults at the police until well after midnight. He urged G20 leaders to discuss the issue, saying global pressure could force China to change its stance toward the territory.

Most liked

Chandrababu Naidu served notice to vacate his official residence
TD leaders from TS and AP met Mr Naidu at his Jubilee Hills residence among them was former AP Speaker Kod-ela Siva Prasada Rao. Naidu built Praja Vedika adjacent to his house for use as a venue to meet people and hold official reviews.

Washington Nationals vs. Detroit Tigers 6/30/19, Prediction & Odds
Washington right-hander Austin Voth outlasted Soto in a meeting of pitchers making their sixth career appearance in the majors. Louis Cardinals closer Trevor Rosenthal to a minor league deal after he threw a bullpen session Saturday at Comerica Park.

Google Maps new feature gives updates about delays in public transport
After analyzing the feedbacks of people who use Google Maps , it is possible for Google to make all our lives easier. This algorithm is similar to what Google introduced for prediction of crowds in restaurants and retail locations.

ACLU And Others Sue To Stop Georgia’s "Heartbeat Bill" Law
Georgia's pro-life law is among several heartbeat laws passed recently by state legislators. In granting the preliminary injunction that blocked the law, U.S.

Pompeo meets Indian leader amid trade tensions
India has not created any new situation. "Some US policy shifts have bewildered and troubled New Delhi ", said Rossow. President Donald Trump's decision in March that year to impose higher import tariffs on Indian aluminium and steel.

Sir Elton John calls Vladimir Putin's gay rights claims 'hypocrisy'
When pressed on whether he challenged Putin during that meeting, Tillerson said, "There wasn't any point in that". Russian Federation has reportedly censored gay scenes in the movie " Rocketman " based on John's life.

New "potential risk" found on Boeing's grounded 737 MAX
Now, the FAA has discovered an additional issue through flight simulator testing, but have not disclosed specifics on the issue. In a tweet , the FAA said: "On the most recent issue, the FAA's process is created to discover and highlight potential risks".

Babar ton keeps Pakistan World Cup semi-final hopes alive
Sri Lanka beat New Zealand six times in World Cup matches while none of the other teams have beaten them more than thrice. Leading a side still unsure of a place in the semi-finals, Sarfaraz is naturally not getting too ahead of himself.

Jokowi Calls for Reconciliation in Victory Speech After Constitutional Court Verdict
The judges said Mr Prabowo's legal team had failed to clearly prove the allegations of a "structured, systematic and massive" fraud.

16 dog food brands may cause heart disease in pets, FDA warns
In the report, researchers said there wasn't a genetic connection. "We take the nutrition and health of pets very seriously. The FDA is investigating more than 500 reports of dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM) in dogs linked to grain-free dog food.

Nicki Minaj Takes Jimmy Fallon on a Dinner Date to Red Lobster
Nicki Minaj appeared as a guest on Thursday night's edition of The Tonight Show to promote her new single, " Megatron ". After dining together, the two changed into their uniforms to wait on unsuspecting customers.

More Rain and Severe Weather In the Forecast
This severe thunderstorm is located six kilometres south of Whitefish, moving southeast at 50 km/h, the ministry said. At 7:02 p.m., the second severe thunderstorm warning was lifted but a severe thunderstorm watch remained in effect.

Kawhi Leonard Is Reportedly Considering 4 Teams When Free Agency Begins
NY has its eyes set high in free agency as it is targeting big names such as Kevin Durant , Kawhi Leonard and Kyrie Irving . Klay Thomspon is close to signing a five-year, $190 million max deal with the Golden State Warriors .

New Zealand vs Australia
He then gave Starc a taste of his own medicine, bowling a yorker that tailed in and got under the bat before he could get it down. The early strikes had been made by Jason Behrendorff, the left-armer who ran through England on Tuesday with five for 44.

Trump Willing to Meet Kim Jong Un at DMZ This Weekend
North Korean officials have made clear they do not see "denuclearization" as Pyongyang unilaterally giving up its nuclear weapons. Later, Trump told a news conference: "We may be meeting with Chairman Kim ..." "Nobody's happy about it", the president said.