GREENBELT, Md., March 25, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center’s Visitor Center in Greenbelt, Md., will host a free public event celebrating the science and exploration of Saturn’s largest moon, Titan. The free event will be held at the NASA Goddard Visitor’s Center on Tuesday, Apr. 8, 2014, at 7 p.m. EDT.
The hour-long event will feature a selection of talks and videos presented by experts from NASA’s Cassini mission. As part of its groundbreaking exploration of the Saturn system, Cassini has made regular encounters with Titan and will reach the milestone of its 101st Titan flyby on Apr. 7.
Cassini’s unique view of this Mercury-sized moon has enabled the discovery an extensive layer of liquid water deep beneath Titan’s surface. The spacecraft has mapped lakes and seas larger than North America’s Great Lakes but made of liquid methane and ethane. And the onboard instrument suite has probed the dense, smog-like atmosphere to study the organic molecules formed from the breakup of methane by solar radiation.
To celebrate this decade of exceptional science, Cassini Science Planning Engineers Trina Ray and Kimberly Steadman from NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif., will discuss how the mission team plans a Titan flyby, followed by a synopsis of Cassini’s top 10 Titan discoveries so far.
Goddard planetary scientist Conor Nixon will moderate the evening, and a question-and-answer session will follow the presentations. Visitors also are invited to watch the latest Science on a Sphere movies and, conditions permitting, to view planets and other celestial objects through telescopes provided by the Goddard Astronomy Club.
The lecture is intended for members of the public of high-school age and older. Doors open at 6:30 p.m., and the lecture will start promptly at 7 p.m. EDT. Space is limited.