Titan's prevailing circulation might drive highly intermittent, yet significant sediment transport

This is a Preprint and has not been peer reviewed. The published version of this Preprint is available: https://doi.org/10.1029/2022GL097913. This is version 2 of this Preprint.

Downloads

Download Preprint

Supplementary Files
Authors

Francesco Comola , Jasper F Kok , Juan M Lora , Kaylie Cohanim, Xinting Yu , Chao He , Patricia McGuiggan, Sarah M Hörst , Francis Turney

Abstract

Titan, the largest moon of Saturn, is characterized by gigantic linear dunes and an active dust cycle. Much like on Earth, these aeolian processes are caused by the wind-driven saltation of surface grains. It is still unclear, however, how saltation on Titan can occur despite the typically weak surface winds and the potentially cohesive surface grains. Here, we explore the hypothesis that saltation on Titan may be sustained at lower wind speeds than previously thought, primarily through granular splash rather than aerodynamic lifting of surface grains. We propose a saltation mass flux parameterization for Titan and use it to quantify sediment transport with a general circulation model. The results suggest that Titan's prevailing circulation can generate highly intermittent yet significant saltation, with mass fluxes of the order of 10^4 kg m^-1 year^-1, and that Titan dunes may be formed primarily by fine grains, approximately 0.1 mm in size.

DOI

https://doi.org/10.31223/X52G7H

Subjects

Physical Sciences and Mathematics, Planetary Sciences

Keywords

Titan, Saltation

Dates

Published: 2021-03-25 16:17

Last Updated: 2022-04-02 15:18

Older Versions
License

CC BY Attribution 4.0 International

Add a Comment

You must log in to post a comment.


Comments

There are no comments or no comments have been made public for this article.