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Europe Plume locations lack the expected heat signatures



The study of two potential plume sites on Jupiter's moon Europa has shown that, unlike Enceladus, where the clouds have a very clear and distinct temperature signature, no expected hotspot signatures are expected, as Research Director Julie Rathbun of the Planetary Science Institute shows

. "We searched the available Galileo heat data at the proposed locations for potential smoke clouds, and a re-analysis of the Galileo mission's temperature data is not particularly peculiar to the areas where smoke clouds may have been observed, and there are no hotspot signatures Sites, "said Rathbun.

"This is surprising because the Enceladus feathers have a clear thermal signature at their place of origin, so this suggests that either the Europa feathers are very different, or the feathers are only occasional or that they do not exist, or that their thermal signature is too small to be recognized by current data. "

Plumes are gas jets sent to you from the surface of a planet, similar to Old Faithful in Yellowstone National Park. So that the gas can be shot upwards, an energy source is needed. Generally, this source of energy will also heat the surface around the source, as we see it in Yellowstone with hotspots on the geysers and hot springs nearby.

This can also be seen on Enceladus, a hot region from which the feathers erupt on Enceladus' surface. The hot spots at Yellowstone and Enceladus are unmistakable and easy to spot. The lack of a hotspot in Europe indicates that the hotspots there are very different, if they even exist.

Rathbun's findings, entitled "A Closer Look at Galileo Thermal Data from Potential Sources Near Pwyll, Europe", were made at a press conference in the Department of Planetary Sciences of the American Astronomical Society's 50th Annual Meeting in Knoxville, Tennessee

Rathbun's work goes back to earlier observations suggesting a plume of cloud from an area north of Pwyll to Europe and a re-analysis of the Galileo magnetometer, and plasma data also suggests a source of cloud about 1

,000 kilometers northeast of the first site.

Rathbun's work was funded in part by a subcontract for PSI from Arizona State University of NASA's E-Themis (Europe's Thermal Emission Imaging System) mission. 19659002]

Related Links

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