Model of Titanís atmosphere

Model of Titanís atmosphere

. A study of the bending and fading of homebound radio signals when the Voyager 1 spacecraft passed behind Titan led to this plot of the temperature and pressure in the satelliteís atmosphere. The temperature (bottom axis) decreases with height until about 40 kilometers altitude, and then increases rapidly at higher altitudes (left axis). The entire atmosphere is well below the freezing temperature of water, at 273 degrees kelvin, but the lower atmosphere is just warm enough to allow the condensation of liquid nitrogen. The high-altitude smog might cover clouds of methane, and liquid ethane and methane could rain down to the surface. The pressure (right axis) is given in units of millibars or 0.001 bars, and it reaches 1000 millibars or 1 bar near the surface of Titan.The air pressure at sea level on Earth is also 1 bar.

Copyright 2010, Professor Kenneth R. Lang, Tufts University