Cordelia Stevens

Topic: Ariel

I believe that Uranus’s moon Ariel would be the most interesting to study. This is due to the interesting properties that the moon presents, such as carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, and recent geological activity on the moon.


The Carbon Dioxide found in the atmosphere of Ariel is of much excitement to me as carbon dioxide is an organic compound, which is a common by-product of life and biological processes, which could be indicative of having the ability to support life or indicates having supported life in the past. This is further supported by the presence of water ice on the moon, which is vital for life. This possibility of having a history with biological processes making Ariel very interesting to us. If we were to explore the planet with a spacecraft and collect samples from the surface of the planet, we may be able to identify more biological elements that would support the presence of life on the planet, such as sulphur, phosphorus, and nitrogen in compound form bonded with the silicate rock in the surface, such as silicate sulphate, or found under the surface of the moon.

The geological activity would also prove to be interesting, as it would allow us to study, in more depth, the evolution of tectonic change as a moon goes through time. For example, when a moon is younger, such as how ariel is one of Uranus’s youngest moons, there is more tectonic action due to the heat in the core. This could prove useful to study the pace and nature of moon cooling, by a study of tectonic movement. This could be used in extra-terrestrial travel, as in some cases, moons will be more habitable than the planets they orbit, as they will exhibit the elements needed for life in space.

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