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Europa’s Icy Surface Glows in the Dark

Dragon
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Europa’s Icy Surface Glows in the Dark Empty Europa’s Icy Surface Glows in the Dark

Post by Dragon Wed Nov 11, 2020 4:55 pm

Jupiter’s icy moon Europa is bombarded by a constant and intense blast of radiation from the gas giant. Different salty compounds on the moon’s surface react differently to the radiation and emit their own unique glimmer.

To the naked eye, this glow would look sometimes slightly green, sometimes slightly blue or white and with varying degrees of brightness, depending on what material it is.

“We were able to predict that this nightside ice glow could provide additional information on Europa’s surface composition,” said lead author Dr. Murthy Gudipati, a researcher at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory.

“How that composition varies could give us clues about whether Europa harbors conditions suitable for life.”

“That’s because Europa holds a massive, global interior ocean that could percolate to the surface through the moon’s thick crust of ice. By analyzing the surface, we can learn more about what lies beneath.”

The surface of Europa is likely made of a mix of ice and commonly known salts on Earth, such as magnesium sulfate and sodium chloride.

The new research shows that incorporating those salts into water ice under Europa-like conditions and blasting it with radiation produces a glow.

Continued...
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Europa’s Icy Surface Glows in the Dark 334pu7m
Dragon
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Europa’s Icy Surface Glows in the Dark Empty Re: Europa’s Icy Surface Glows in the Dark

Post by Dragon Wed Nov 11, 2020 4:57 pm

Europa’s Icy Surface Glows in the Dark Image_9034-Europa-Glow
Image credit: NASA / JPL-Caltech

This illustration of Jupiter’s moon Europa shows how its icy surface may glow on its nightside.

Source / Image Courtesy


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Europa’s Icy Surface Glows in the Dark 334pu7m
Dragon
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Europa’s Icy Surface Glows in the Dark Empty Re: Europa’s Icy Surface Glows in the Dark

Post by Dragon Wed Nov 11, 2020 4:57 pm



Jupiter's icy moon Europa found to 'glow in the dark' on its far side.


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Europa’s Icy Surface Glows in the Dark 334pu7m
Dragon
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Europa’s Icy Surface Glows in the Dark Empty Re: Europa’s Icy Surface Glows in the Dark

Post by Dragon Wed Nov 11, 2020 4:58 pm



Europa: Jupiter's Icy Moon and Its Underground Ocean


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