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Global Climate & Habitability: May 2013


Saturn's moon Titan might be in for some wild weather as it heads into its spring and summer, if two new models are correct. Scientists think that as the seasons change in Titan's northern hemisphere, waves could ripple across the moon's hydrocarbon seas, and hurricanes could begin to swirl over these areas, too.

Please join us for the NAI Early Earth Focus Group Workshop Without Walls on "The Hadean Earth-Moon System". The workshop is aimed at providing the most up-to-date science on the first billion years' history of the Earth-Moon system, from solar system formation at 4.567 Ga to the widespread preservation of crustal rocks at 3.5 Ga to evidence for life preserved within those rocks.

A Comparative Climatology Symposium was held at NASA Headquarters in Washington, DC on Tuesday, May 7. The symposium focused on new approaches to climate research by highlighting the similarities and contrasts between the environments of the terrestrial planets Venus, Earth, Mars, and Saturn's smoggy moon Titan. The symposium also included discussions about exoplanets, the Sun, and past, present and future space missions.

With cold temperatures, low humidity and high levels of ultraviolet radiation, conditions 10 kilometers above Earth's surface may seem inhospitable. But, next time you're flying consider this: The air outside your airplane window may be filled with microscopic life that affects everything from weather and climate to the distribution of pathogens around the planet.

The symposium will highlight the similarities and contrasts between the environments of the terrestrial planets: Venus, Earth, Mars, and Titan. Presentations will cover current Earth climate models, Earth observation, past and current Venus missions (as a laboratory for Earth climate), observational studies of the Terrestrial planets (exoplanets), and the influence of the Sun on climate. The Symposium will conclude with a panel discussion and Q/A.