Titan and beyond the infinite
Sonification and visualisation from the Cassini–Huygens experiment
On January 14,2005, after a 7 years and 3.2 billion kilometer trip, Huygens an automated spacecraft hit the surface of Titan, a moon orbiting around Saturn. After its descent, the drone sent a 2 minutes 30 seconds radio message. The sound file contained the data collected by the various scientific instruments. In fact these data are a log book, the history of a fall from a never visited before place.
Nowadays these data are available as computer files from the European Space Agency. Titan, and Beyond the Infinite uses these data, and scientific tools.
To produce the video I started by programming a software which organises the data and arranges them in charts. The title is a direct reference to a 2001 : Space Odyssey scene, Jupiter, and Beyond the Infinite, also known as the Stargate Sequence. The scene was created by Douglas Trumbull. At the time, Trumbull was a graphic artist for the NASA. He adapted for cinema a technique named slit scan and used before by photographers. Using long exposure time with camera motion, the technique creates the illusion of movement. In my video, the Huygens data are parsed in a database and then organized into graphics. The data like the altitude and the speed of Huygens or the density of the atmosphere of Titan are analysed by my software creating images using the slit-scan technique.