DPS 34th Meeting, October 2002
Session 22. Titan
Oral, Chair(s): M.E. Brown and A. Coustenis, Wednesday, October 9, 2002, 10:10-10:30am and 11:00am-12:30pm, Ballroom

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[22.06] Oxygen Chemistry in Titanís Atmosphere

E.H. Wilson (Jet Propulsion Laboratory), S.K. Atreya (University of Michigan)

Oxygen chemistry in the atmosphere of Titan is controlled by the presence of CO and a likely influx of extraplanetary oxygen. The presence of water vapor, corroborated by the Infrared Space Observatory (ISO) stratospheric detection [1], combined with CO induces the formation of CO2, which has also been observed [2]. However, the high CO/H2O ratio in Titan's atmosphere causes the propagation of oxygen chemistry to follow a different path than what is predicted for the Jovian planets. Specifically, the efficient CO recycling mechanisms serve to inhibit significant formation of larger oxygen compounds such as CH3OH (methanol) and CH2CO (ketene). The results of a 1-D photochemical model are presented in the context of identifying possible oxygen compounds that might be detected by the Cassini/Huygens mission which will arrive at Titan in 2004.

This work was supported by the NASA Planetary Atmospheres Program and by the GCMS Project of the Cassini/Huygens mission.

[1] A. Coustenis et al., Astron. Astrophys., 336, L85-L89, 1998. [2] A. Coustenis et al., Icarus, 80, 54-76, 1989.


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Bulletin of the American Astronomical Society, 34, #3< br> © 2002. The American Astronomical Soceity.