37th DPS Meeting, 4-9 September 2005
Session 45 Titan's Atmosphere
Poster, Wednesday, September 7, 2005, 6:00-7:15pm, Music Recital Room

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[45.21] Waves and Horizontal Structures in Titan's Thermosphere

I. C. F. Mueller-Wodarg (Imperial College London), R. V. Yelle, N. Borggren (University of Arizona), J. H. Waite (University of Michigan), INMS Science Team

Observations by Cassini's INMS instrument during the Titan flybys TA and T5 on Oct 26, 2004 and April 16, 2005, respectively, provided first in-situ observations of Titan's upper atmosphere between around 1025 and 1600 km altitude. These are best fit with isothermal atmospheres of 149 K and 159 K at TA and T5, respectively. From the observed densities we derived vertical profiles of pressures, from which temperatures can be derived. In these derived temperatures we find strong wave signatures with amplitudes of up to 10 K and wavelengths of around 220 km. Furthermore, we find waves in the N2 and CH4 densities. The differences in phasing of the N2 and CH4 densities allowed us to constrain the wave periods and direction of propagation. The derived temperatures suggest strong horizonal composition changes in the background atmosphere. This paper will present the key findings from our analyses.

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Bulletin of the American Astronomical Society, 37 #3
© 2004. The American Astronomical Soceity.