NASA: Europa throws jets of water out in space

27 September 2016
75 Views

Scientists have found evidence of a liquid water ocean swirling under the icy shell of Jupiter’s moon Europa, Nasa announced on Monday, with new evidence of water plumes bursting out into space. Scientists first reported the behaviour in 2013 using the Hubble telescope, but have now made a follow-up sighting.

It is significant because Europa, with its huge subsurface ocean of liquid water, is one of the most likely places to find microbial life beyond Earth.

Hubble made its latest identification by studying Europa as it passed in front of Jupiter.
The telescope looked in ultraviolet wavelengths to see if the giant planet’s light was in any way being absorbed by material emanating from the moon’s surface. Ten times Hubble looked and on three of those occasions it spied what appeared to be “dark fingers” extending from the edge of Europa.

With Jupiter as a bright light behind the moon, the scientists observed Europa in silhouette, and with ultraviolet light saw what appeared to be evidence of the plumes.

“If plumes exist, this is an exciting find,” lead researcher said. “It would allow us to search for signs of life without having to drill through miles of ice”, he added.

Nasa scientists have been working on proposals for a Europa mission for 15 years, and has a tentative plan to send a spacecraft on a flyby near the moon in the 2020s, zipping past its intense, electronics-frying radiation field.

You may be interested

The full IMF programme for Greece
FINANCE
shares29 views
FINANCE
shares29 views

The full IMF programme for Greece

makis - Jul 21, 2017

The IMF published its new programme on Greece on Thursday, which was approved on principle by the organisation’s board of…

President Pavlopoulos extends support to Kos Mayor
POLITICS
shares34 views
POLITICS
shares34 views

President Pavlopoulos extends support to Kos Mayor

makis - Jul 21, 2017

The President of the Hellenic Republic, Prokopis Pavlopoulos expressed his deepest sorrow for the victims of the Kos earthquake in…

Kos earthquake: Turkish victim identified as Sinan Kurtoglu
GREECE
shares52 views
GREECE
shares52 views

Kos earthquake: Turkish victim identified as Sinan Kurtoglu

makis - Jul 21, 2017

The name of the Turkish national killed in the earthquake on the island of Kos is Sinan Kurtoglu. According to…

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.