Tag Archives: Jupiter

Hubble spots possible water plumes erupting on Jupiter’s moon Europa

Jupiter' s Moon Europa

Jupiter’ s Moon Europa may potentially harbor Life in the Solar System. Credit: NASA/ESA/W. Sparks (STScI)/USGS Astrogeology Science Center

Astronomers using NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope have imaged what may be water vapor plumes erupting off the surface of Jupiter’s moon Europa. This finding bolsters other Hubble observations suggesting the icy moon erupts with high altitude water vapor plumes. The observation increases the possibility that missions to Europa may be able to sample Europa’s ocean without having to drill through miles of ice. “Europa’s ocean is considered to be one of the most promising places that could potentially harbor life in the solar system,” said Geoff Yoder, acting associate administrator for NASA’s Science Mission Directorate in Washington. “These plumes, if they do indeed exist, may provide another way to sample Europa’s subsurface.” Read more