That glint you see is sunlight reflecting off Kraken Mare, a 150,000 square mile lake of hydrocarbons found on the southern hemisphere of Saturn’s moon, Titan. While the satellite has been previously thought to have liquid on its surface , this is the first visual conformation of the such, reports Scientific American. Mind you, however, that this liquid is not water but methane in a liquid form. Well then, why the hell do we care?
Because methane is a great fuel, as NASA found out when it tested the LOX/methane engine back in 2007. So instead of shooting people out into space with all the fuel they need for the round-trip, you can pack them off with enough to make it there, whereby they’ll pick up more fuel at the destination, then jet back home on a full tank. Major points to methane being a “green propellant,” as Terri Tramel noted in ’07, “[y]ou don’t have to put on a HAZMAT suit to handle it like fuels used on many space vehicles.” And since Titan has an atmosphere*, besides this handy methane, it may be the first place in the solar system we start setting up for space vacations (you heard, Virgin Galactic?)!
*Atmosphere not breathable by humans, some exceptions may apply.