Vote 2020 graphic
Everything you need to know about and expect during
the most important election of our lifetimes

The Plains of Titan Will Be Named After a Planet from "Dune"

Illustration for article titled The Plains of Titan Will Be Named After a Planet from Dune

Saturn's Moon Titan is full of dark, icy sands, so it makes sense that its dune-filled plains should be named after a planet from the Dune series.The Chusuk plain is the dark region next to the letter C.


The blurry areas (including the dark plains) are spots where we have lower-resolution images of the moon's surface. The stripe of sharper images show the surface of the moon beneath its cloud layer, created via special imaging techniques.

According to Universe Today:

The US Geological Survey Astrogeology Science Center announced the first plain or "planitia" given a name will be designated as Chusuk Planitia. Chusuk was a planet from the Dune series, known for its musical instruments. Chusuk Planitia on Titan is located at 5.0S, 23.5W, and in the picture here is the small, dark area next to the "C" of Chusuk


Chusuk is a minor planet in the Dune series, and in an appendix to that novel, Herbert says it is the "fourth planet of Theta Shalish; the so-called 'Music Planet' noted for the quality of its musical instruments." I'm fairly stumped about why Titan cartographers chose Chusuk. Why not just go for Arrakis?

You can see a complete map of Titan, based on survey pictures taken by the Cassini probe, with all its named features labeled, on this PDF.

Share This Story

Get our newsletter



I'd say they're saving Arrakis for an actual 'Dune.'