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Lifting Titan's Veil: Exploring the Giant Moon of Saturn

By: R Lorenz and J Mitton

260 pages, Col plates, b/w plates, figs, tabs

Cambridge University Press

Hardback | May 2002 | #130029 | ISBN: 0521793483
Availability: Usually dispatched within 6 days Details
NHBS Price: £45.99 $60/€52 approx

About this book

Lifting Titan's Veil is a revealing account of the second largest moon in our solar system. This world in orbit around Saturn is the only body in the solar system with an atmosphere strikingly similar to Earth's. Titan is like a giant frozen laboratory that may help scientists understand the first chemical steps towards the origin of life. Beginning with its discovery in 1655, the authors describe our current knowledge of Titan, including observations made before the space age, results from the Voyager missions of the 1980s, and recent revelations from the world's most advanced telescopes. Ralph Lorenz includes his personal experiences in preparing for the Cassini mission, which will reach Saturn in 2004 and release the Huygens probe into Titan's atmosphere in 2005. This book is a splendid introduction to Titan, and will appeal to anyone interested in astronomical discovery and space exploration.

'On 14 January, 2005, the Huygens probe will touch down, making titan the most distant place so far visited by a soft-lander from Earth. In Lifting Titan's Veil the challenges and pitfalls of a mammoth space mission are balanced by a thorough review of the painstaking scientific quest to understand this amazing mist-shrouded moon ! This excellent book skilfully blends what is known with what we hope to discover.' David W. Hughes, New Scientist '! a valuable addition to current literature concerning planetary satellites in the solar system ! if you have any interest in planetary evolution, the nature of atmospheres, or the search for life, you should read this book.' Richard Taylor, Spaceflight 'Lifting Titan's Veil is an account of the exploration of Titan, Saturn's largest moon, and the joint effort by the European Space Academy (ESA) and NASA to reveal its secrets with the Cassini-Huygens mission. ! I recommend Lifting Titan's Veil to anyone having an interest in planetary exploration.' Science ' ! an authoritative and readable guide to Titan and what to expect when the Cassini spacecraft reaches Saturn and releases the Huygens probe into Titan's atmosphere in 2004.' A&G 'It is a relativity well-kept secret among planetary scientists that Saturn's moon Titan is not merely the second largest satellite, but one of the most complex and interesting bodies in our solar system. ! Lorenz and Milton have done us all a service by writing a book that stimulates the public's interest and refreshes scientists' memories before Cassini and Huygens deliver their floods of data and revolutionize our understanding of Titan forever.' Randolph L. Kirk, EOS


Preface; 1. Discovering Titan; 2. Seeing Titan; 3. Titan's puzzling atmosphere; 4. Murky meteorology; 5. Titan's landscape; 6. The Cassini-Huygens mission; 7. The shape of things to come; Appendix. Titan - physical and dynamical data; Bibliography.

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Ralph Lorenz trained as an engineer and worked for the European Space Agency at the very beginning of the Huygens project. Since obtaining a PhD at the University of Kent, England, he has worked as a planetary scientist at the University of Arizona, USA. Jacqueline Mitton obtained a PhD in astrophysics from the University of Cambridge, and is now a full-time writer and media consultant specialising in astronomy.

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