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Journal Article

Enceladus and Titan: emerging worlds of the Solar System


Roussos,  Elias
Department Planets and Comets, Max Planck Institute for Solar System Research, Max Planck Society;

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Sulaiman, A., Achilleos, N., Bertucci, C., Coates, A., Dougherty, M., Hadid, L., et al. (2021). Enceladus and Titan: emerging worlds of the Solar System. Experimental Astronomy. doi:10.1007/s10686-021-09810-z.

Cite as: https://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-000A-1995-2
Some of the major discoveries of the recent Cassini-Huygens mission have put Titan and Enceladus firmly on the Solar System map. The mission has revolutionised our view of Solar System satellites, arguably matching their scientific importance with that of their host planet. While Cassini-Huygens has made big surprises in revealing Titan’s organically rich environment and Enceladus’ cryovolcanism, the mission’s success naturally leads us to further probe these findings. We advocate the acknowledgement of Titan and Enceladus science as highly relevant to ESA’s long-term roadmap, as logical follow-on to Cassini-Huygens. In this White Paper, we will outline important science questions regarding these satellites and identify the science themes we recommend ESA cover during the Voyage 2050 planning cycle. Addressing these science themes would make major advancements to the present knowledge we have about the Solar System, its formation, evolution, and likelihood that other habitable environments exist outside the Earth’s biosphere.