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This is an image of Triton.
Image from: NASA

Inside Triton

The diagram to the left shows a drawing of the possible interior of Triton. The composition of Triton is mostly ice, therefore there is probably a small core of some rocky material buried inside, overlain with mantles of ice of various phases. One of the phases of ice is water however, and if water is present it could provide and environment suitable forlife.

If the interior is warm enough, there may be enough energy for the interior layers of Triton to turn over. This type of interior motion leaves clues on the surface of a planet, such as folds and deep canyons. Surface plate tectonics is a big clue about interior motions of the Earth.

The fact that this moon is made primarily of ice suggests a certain path for it's history.

Last modified April 22, 2009 by Randy Russell.

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Windows to the Universe, a project of the National Earth Science Teachers Association, is sponsored in part is sponsored in part through grants from federal agencies (NASA and NOAA), and partnerships with affiliated organizations, including the American Geophysical Union, the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, the Earth System Information Partnership, the American Meteorological Society, the National Center for Science Education, and TERC. The American Geophysical Union and the American Geosciences Institute are Windows to the Universe Founding Partners. NESTA welcomes new Institutional Affiliates in support of our ongoing programs, as well as collaborations on new projects. Contact NESTA for more information. NASA ESIP NCSE HHMI AGU AGI AMS NOAA