Scientists have always been hopeful that Saturn’s moon Titan might harbor signs of alien life, and it seems the odds have only gotten better with some new findings.
Gizmodo reports new findings put together by Cornell chemist Martin Rahm in the latest edition of Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, which indicates conditions on the moon’s surface could be favorable for life to emerge. Outside of Earth, Titan is the only place in our solar system that has lakes, rivers and rainfall. Of course, it has a whole lot more methane, but still. It’s something.
The moon is extremely cold (around -290 degrees Fahrenheit), so they’re trying to see if the processes for life could happen in conditions that cold. Basically, Rahm says you would need to be able to do chemistry at extremely low temperatures. Since Titan has been found to possess hydrogen cyanide (HCN), which can form polyimines, those elements are sturdy enough to potentially survive.
It’ll obviously be a long, long time before NASA can afford to send any humans out that far — but this could certainly help move Titan up the list for an aquatic rover mission. Who knows what we might find now?