Encyclopedia of Astrobiology

Living Edition
| Editors: Muriel Gargaud, William M. Irvine, Ricardo Amils, Henderson James Cleaves, Daniele Pinti, José Cernicharo Quintanilla, Michel Viso

Tethys

Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-642-27833-4_1576-3

Definition

Tethys is one of the midsized icy satellites of Saturn. Discovered by Giovanni Domenico Cassini in 1684, it orbits at a distance of 294,700 km (or 4.9 Saturnian radii) from Saturn. Its diameter is 1,060 km. Images taken by the Voyager 2 spacecraft in 1981 show a variety of terrains, with some ancient, heavily cratered regions including the large Odysseus basin that is over 400 km in diameter and a more recent, remodeled surface with a large canyon, Ithaca Chasma, which is about 1,000 km long and 100 km wide. The density of Tethys is 1.0 g/cm3, which indicates a rather pure water-ice satellite. Two other small satellites, Calypso and Telesto, are located on the same orbit as Tethys.

On Earth, the so-called Tethys ocean separated the continents of Gondwana and Laurasia during the Mesozoic.

See Also

Keywords

Bioorganic Chemistry Small Satellite Tethys Ocean Remodel Surface Large Canyon 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.LESIA – Bâtiment ISO (n°17)Observatoire de Paris – Section de MeudonMeudonFrance