Observations of the D/H ratio in Methane in the atmosphere of Saturn's moon, Titan - where did the Saturnian system form?

Kedziora-Chudczer, Lucyna and Bailey, Jeremy and Horner, Jonathan (2013) Observations of the D/H ratio in Methane in the atmosphere of Saturn's moon, Titan - where did the Saturnian system form? In: 12th Australian Space Science Conference (ASSC 2012), 24-26 Sept 2012, Melbourne, Australia.

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Abstract

The details of the Solar system's formation are still heavily debated. Questions remain about the formation locations of the giant planets, and the degree to which volatile material was mixed throughout the proto-planetary system. One diagnostic which offers great promise in helping to unravel the history of planet formation is the study of the level of deuteration in various Solar system bodies. For example, the D/H ratio of methane in the atmosphere of Titan can be used as a diagnostic of the initial conditions of the solar nebula within the region of giant planet formation, and can help us to determine where Titan (and, by extension, the Saturnian system) accreted its volatile material. The level of Titanian deuteration also has implications for both the sources and long term evolution of Titan's atmospheric composition. We present the results of observations taken in the 1.58 microns window using the NIFS spectrometer on the Gemini telescope, and model our data using the VSTAR line--by--line transfer model, which yields a D/H ratio for Titan's atmosphere of 143+/-16) x 10^{-6} [1]. We are currently in the process of modeling the Gemini high resolution GNIRS spectra using new sets of line parameters derived for methane in the region between 1.2-1.7 microns [2].


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Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Commonwealth Reporting Category E) (Paper)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Copyright © 2013 National Space Society of Australia Ltd. No evidence of copyright restrictions preventing deposit of Accepted version.
Faculty / Department / School: No Faculty
Date Deposited: 14 Aug 2017 01:27
Last Modified: 15 Aug 2017 03:45
Uncontrolled Keywords: Titan, methane, spectroscopy, radiative transfer, deuterium, planetary formation
Fields of Research : 02 Physical Sciences > 0201 Astronomical and Space Sciences > 020110 Stellar Astronomy and Planetary Systems
02 Physical Sciences > 0201 Astronomical and Space Sciences > 020108 Planetary Science (excl. Extraterrestrial Geology)
02 Physical Sciences > 0201 Astronomical and Space Sciences > 020101 Astrobiology
URI: http://eprints.usq.edu.au/id/eprint/32749

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