This is an artist’s concept of a plume of water vapor thought to be ejected off the frigid, icy surface of the Jovian moon Europa, located about 500 million miles from the sun.
Image Credit: NASA/ESA/K. Retherford/SWRI
Who doesn’t love the Jovian moon Europa?
It has mystery, intrigue and so much possibility. One of Jupiter’s largest moons, Europa has the potential to harbor life, according to researchers, who believe an ocean of water exists below the satellite’s frigid surface. Most recently, there’s been some evidence to support that claim.
The Hubble Space Telescope captured images of water vapor surrounding the northern region of the icy moon. Researchers are confident that the vapor is caused by erupting water plumes on Europa’s surface.
Should further observations support the finding, this would make Europa the second moon in the solar system known to have water vapor plumes.
The first moon believed to have ejected water vapor is Enceladus, one of Saturn’s moons.
The search for water is paramount to the search for life and scientists believe there are countless areas in our solar system and beyond that have H20. Here’s a photo gallery of some of the places that are believed to have had or have water. Which is your fav?