NASA Announces Dragonfly Mission: Drones to Saturn Moon Titan

US space agency NASA is sending drone called “Dragonfly” to the Titan to explore Saturn’s largest moon and the drone will fly and land on several spots on the icy moon to report whether it can support microbial life or not.

Announcing the mission on 27th June the space agency explained that a rotorcraft designed to ply the skies of the huge, hazy and potentially life-hosting Saturn moon.

The official said that Dragonfly will launch in 2026 and land on Titan eight years later where the drone will spend 2.5 years roaming around the 3,200-mile-wide moon, making two dozen flights that cover a total of about 110 miles.

“Advancing our search for the building blocks of life, the Dragonfly will fly multiple sorties to sample and examine sites around Saturn’s icy moon. It will be launch in 2026 and arrive in 2034.

“We can’t go back in time on Earth to learn lessons about the chemistry that led to life,” said Curt Niebur, NASA’s lead program scientist for New Frontiers.

The drone is a multi-rotor vehicle which has eight rotors to fly like a dragon and that will be the first time for NASA.

It’s instrument will research how far prebiotic chemistry may have progressed, the moon’s atmospheric and surface properties and it’s subsurface of occean.

A composition of “sand dunes” and “waterways” dominate the landscape of the Titan. Its surface is composed of water ice, frozen as hard as rock. Beneath the crust hides a liquid-water reservoir that astrophysicists believe to be the same temperature as the shallows of the Pacific Ocean.

The mission is geared toward characterizing Titan’s chemistry in detail.

> Puza Sarker Snighda

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