Nasa: Flying over Europa – This is what Jupiter’s Moon looks like up close – See image and video

by
Nasa: Flying over Europa – This is what Jupiter’s Moon looks like up close – See image and video

Europa is the sixth largest moon in the solar system, slightly smaller than Earth’s moon.

The first picture taken by the spacecraft Juno her NASA as it flew as close as it could to Jupiter’s ice-covered moon Europa, it reached Earth.

Revealing surface features in a region near the moon’s equator called Annwn Regio, the image was taken during the spacecraft’s closest approach to the Sun on Thursday, September 29, at 2:36 am. PDT, about 219 miles (352 kilometers) away.

This is only Europa’s third closest flyby of the moon in history, estimated at 310 miles (500 kilometers) altitude, and the closest shot by any spacecraft since Jan. 3, 2000, when Galileo’s NASA came within 218 miles (351 km) of the surface.

Europa is the sixth largest moon in the solar system, slightly smaller than Earth’s moon. Scientists believe a salty ocean lies beneath a kilometre-thick shell of ice, sparking questions about possible conditions capable of supporting life beneath Europa’s surface.

The Juno will capture some of the highest resolution images ever taken of the moon’s icy shell.

The spacecraft is also expected to gather data on the moon’s interior, where a salty ocean is believed to exist.

The ice shell that lies on the moon’s surface is between 10 and 15 miles (16 and 24 km) thick, and the ocean it likely sits on top of is estimated to be 40 to 100 miles (64 to 161 km) deep.

The instrument Juno’s Microwave Radiometer will study the ice crust to determine more about its temperature and composition.

It is the first time that this kind of information will be collected about its frozen shell.

The data and images captured by Juno could help inform its Europa Clipper mission NASAwhich will launch in 2024.

The Europa Clipper can help scientists determine whether an internal ocean exists and whether the moon — one of several orbiting Jupiter — has the potential to be habitable.

wqdqwd

You May Also Like

Recommended for you

Immediate Peak