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Apr 29, 2005
Titan's Hydrocarbons

The discovery of hydrocarbons in the upper atmosphere of Titan offers intriguing ideas about the recent history of the Solar System.

After its latest flyby of Saturn’s moon, Titan, on April 16, 2005, the Cassini spacecraft announced that a surprising number of hydrocarbons are found in the moon’s upper atmosphere. For mainstream astronomers, as the press release stated, “Titan's atmosphere may be a laboratory for studying the organic chemistry that preceded life and provided the building blocks for life on Earth. The role of the upper atmosphere in this organic ‘factory’ of hydrocarbons is very intriguing to scientists, especially given the large number of different hydrocarbons detected by Cassini during the flyby.”

For the Saturn theory, the discovery is significant because the recent history of Saturn is seen as a time of catastrophic changes in orbits and temperatures. Catastrophist Dwardu Cardona points out, “Compare the hydrocarbons in Titan's atmosphere—even theorized to be raining down on the surface—with descriptions of hydrocarbon (oil, tar, and naphtha) rains here on Earth in past ages.” Descriptions of such falls come from the mythology of both east and west terrestrial hemispheres.

From the standard point of view, Titan has always been cold, so its present atmosphere is believed to be little changed from its primeval composition. The early Earth is believed to have had a similar atmosphere, but Earth’s warmer temperatures transformed the hydrocarbons into the present-day biosphere.

From a Saturn theory point of view, Titan may be young. It may recently have been removed from a much warmer environment. Could Titan have been capable of supporting life in the past? Will we find the remains of an extinct biosphere when we take a closer look? Or might we even find dormant or even live organisms on the frigid surface? These notions are intriguing, but they are only peripheral to the Saturn theory. As Cardona put it, “I will not be surprised if such life, or signs of past such life, is found. And I will not be disappointed if none ever is.”

And where did the hydrocarbons come from? The Cassini press release suggests that interstellar space is the source because comets, which are believed to have formed in interstellar space, have hydrocarbons in their tails.

The Electric Universe model has a different genesis for comets. They are formed in plasma discharges (flares) of the gas giants, especially during times of close interaction with other planets. So the hydrocarbons in comets’ tails, the hydrocarbons on Titan, and the hydrocarbons that the myths report as falling from the sky have the same source. And these bodies were all flooded with hydrocarbons in catastrophic events that happened only a few thousand years ago.

PRESS RELEASE about hydrocarbons on Titan here:

Titan from an Electric Universe perspective:
TPOD Feb 1, 2005,  Titan’s Big Sister

TPOD Jan 20, 2005,  Titan’s Strange Atmosphere
TPOD Jan 24, 2005,  Seen Through Titan’s Haze
TPOD Jan 17, 2005  Titan Panorama From Cassini


David Talbott, Wallace Thornhill
Amy Acheson
  CONTRIBUTING EDITORS: Mel Acheson, Michael Armstrong, Dwardu Cardona,
Ev Cochrane, C.J. Ransom, Don Scott, Rens van der Sluijs, Ian Tresman
  WEBMASTER: Michael Armstrong

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