A radar image of the Shangri-La sand sea on Titan, taken from NASA’s Cassini spacecraft

NASA/JPL-Caltech/ASI/Université Paris-Diderot

The dunes on Saturn’s moon Titan may be made up of the remains of smaller moons that once smashed together and ground each other into sand.

Titan has sand dunes covering about 17 per cent of its surface, sweeping across its equatorial regions. Many researchers have suggested the sand may be made of organic particles that form in Titan’s thick atmosphere and then drift down to the ground. However, laboratory experiments have shown…



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