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Charon Surface Observations: NH Post-Encounter Phase, 1 Aug 2015- TBD
HSchirmer
post Aug 19 2017, 01:52 PM
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QUOTE (nprev @ Aug 19 2017, 12:21 AM) *
Awesome. Thanks, Phil & Steve.

Hmm. In this view, it looks like the very large squarish basin is trapping the red stuff (thiolins?) along the edges of its rim. Aeolian deposition, despite the exceedingly thin almost-hate-to-call-it-an-atmosphere?


It might just be that the "goldilocks zone" for tholins is the inner ridge slope?
Those areas might happen to be where the best combination of
cold-trapping to accumulate methane and sunlight to create tholins?
Sunnier might areas warm quickly and lack methane, shadier areas don't get enough light to drive the tholin reaction

-Post script-
It just occurred to me, a polar crater with rim illumination rotating around (and precessing)
could drive local sublimation and deposition which stay within the cold-trap crater; a quasi-closed system.
Sort of solid to gas phase sohlex-extractor where the solvent flows around and around,
allowing a single batch of solvent to interact over and over and become more and more concentrated-



Here, could be methane ice sublimating around the rim over and over,
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JRehling
post Aug 21 2017, 04:01 AM
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Remember, Charon shares Pluto's extreme axial tilt. That polar basin spends plenty of time (e.g. more than a human lifespan) in direct, nonstop sunlight. It'll be comparatively rare that it is "polar" in our climatological sense. But – who knows – that may be irrelevant. The reddish stain may have been added in one week for all we know. But if it does pertain to climate, the climate of that area is to spend ~125 years in light, then the same duration in dark.

But, check out:

http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v539/...otcallback=true

I wish we knew more about Charon's magnetic field… Or, it may have had one once, that's long since been lost.

One thing to keep in mind about the thinness of Charon's "atmosphere" is that whatever it might carry aloft would be, itself, light proportionally to the air. Triton had plumes being blown in its atmosphere.
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HSchirmer
post Aug 21 2017, 02:37 PM
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QUOTE (JRehling @ Aug 21 2017, 04:01 AM) *
Remember, Charon shares Pluto's extreme axial tilt. That polar basin spends plenty of time (e.g. more than a human lifespan) in direct, nonstop sunlight. It'll be comparatively rare that it is "polar" in our climatological sense.
(snip)
One thing to keep in mind about the thinness of Charon's "atmosphere" is that whatever it might carry aloft would be, itself, light proportionally to the air. Triton had plumes being blown in its atmosphere.


Yep, I was thinking along those lines, as there's some evidence for an atmosphere and liquid nitrogen around 800-900 million years ago, due to orbit tilt and procession.
IIRC the (edit out- highest temperature) thickest atmosphere should have occurred when there is
equatorial sunshine and "polar" nights, but I'd have to go back and double check to be sure.
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