Neptune’s largest moon Triton is still gathering frost on its surface — even after nearly 20 years of accumulation.
Backed by new observations, researchers recently announced that frost continues to travel northward from the southern polar cap of Triton. The frost, which is generated by the sun heating and sublimating volatile material before it travels northward, has been observed since the turn of the century. However, the new findings help shed light on how Triton’s frost budget varies over the world’s full season, which lasts 84 years.
The research, which was presented at a press conference for the Division for Planetary Sciences of the American Astronomical Society 50th annual meeting, used ground-based observations to bolster Triton data gathered by the Voyager 2 spacecraft in 1989.