Traces of constant water vapor have been found in the atmosphere of Jupiter’s satellite
The Hubble Space Telescope, launched into Earth orbit by the US National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), has detected traces of water vapor in the European atmosphere of Jupiter’s satellite. Most importantly, it is constantly present away from the surface of the celestial body.
It is known that under the icy membrane of Europe there is a huge ocean in which we may find signs of life. Water vapor has been spotted there before, though this is explained by powerful geysers erupting from the ice, causing a cloud of gas to appear in a small section of the atmosphere and soon disappear.
According to a paper published in the journal Geophysical Research Letter, analysis of data from the Hubble Space Telescope from 1999 to 2015 revealed the presence of approximately the same amount of vapor that is scattered over a wider area. It is fixed in only one hemisphere of Jupiter’s satellite. The latter is the part of Europe that never deals directly with the planet.
This discovery belongs to a scientist working at the Royal Swedish Institute of Technology, who studied spectral images taken by a spectrograph mounted on the Hubble Space Telescope. He focused on the concentration of oxygen, as it is an essential component of water. The specialist really found this element there and concluded from the calculations that water vapor is constantly found in one hemisphere of Europe.
This finding will help us to understand more about similar icy celestial bodies and the natural companions of Jupiter itself, as well as to better plan for future interplanetary missions.