Experimental Investigations of Precipitation of Crystalline Compounds from Titan's Lakes

Computer Science

Scientific paper

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Scientific paper

We report preliminary results of laboratory experiments designed to investigate the formation of crystalline compounds from solutions of methane and ethane. These experiments are intended to simulate processes of concentration and precipitation that may occur on Titan during evaporation of lakes or pools of liquid hydrocarbons. Precipitates are formed from saturated of solutions of benzene, acetylene, acetonitrile and ammonia in methane and ethane which are slowly allowed to evaporate under a stream of nitrogen at 94 K. The precipitates are analyzed with a combination of Raman microscopy, Cryogenic Scanning Electron Microscopy, and cryogenic optical microscopy. We discuss the implications of these experiments on the surface chemistry of Titan, and how the presence of precipitates can inform interpretation of Cassini radar and VIMS data.

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