shallow liquid water May exist on Jupiter’s moon Europa, data based on the Greenland Ice Sheet suggest. The Independent reports: Europa is a prime candidate for life in the solar system, and Europa’s deep waters have captivated scientists for decades. Voyager and Galileo spacecraft have visited the moons of this massive planet, and data gathered on this mission, along with modeling, indicate the likely existence of a liquid ocean beneath a 20-30 km thick shell of ice. Although the thickness of an ice shell makes sampling it a daunting prospect, growing evidence shows that ice shells may be more dynamic systems rather than barriers, and potentially good enough to sustain life on their own. .
Observations that captured the formation of double-ridged features in Greenland suggest that Europa’s ice crust may have abundant water sacs beneath similar features commonly seen on the surface. “Because it’s closer to the surface, where you can get interesting chemicals from space, other satellites and volcanoes,” said Dustin Schroeder, an associate professor of geophysics at Stanford University’s Stanford University School of Earth, Energy and Environmental Sciences, lead author of the study. Potential life threatening if there is a water bag inside. If the mechanism you see in Greenland is the way it happens in Europa, it suggests that water is ubiquitous.”
Europa’s double ridge appears as a dramatic fissure across the moon’s ice surface, with a crest reaching nearly 1,000 feet. Study author Riley Culberg, PhD student in electrical engineering at Stanford, said: “Possible pocket formation in Europa could be through forcing subterranean sea water up through fractures into the ice shell, suggesting that a reasonable amount of exchange can occur inside the ice shell.” Describe the findings in the journal Nature Communications.
Possibility of shallow liquid water on Jupiter’s moon Europa, study suggests
Source link Possibility of shallow liquid water on Jupiter’s moon Europa, study suggests