Today, NASA revealed recent results from the Galileo Probe's December 19th flyby of Europa, Jupiter's ice-covered moon - including this close-up image of fractured and frozen terrrain. The highest resolution picture ever made of Europa, the snapshot shows a complex array of surface features in a 5.9 x 9.9 mile area near the moon's equatorial region. North is toward the top and the Sun illuminates the region from the right. The image was made from a distance of 2,060 miles. At the upper left are linear criss-crossing ridges and grooves probably caused by movements of the surface ice. Serpentine valleys and lumpy features of unknown origins are also visible. Only a few impact craters are apparent though, implying a geologically young surface. So far, Galileo's findings lend support to the exciting possibility that liquid water once existed and may still exist beneath Europa's surface.
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NASA Official: Jay Norris. Specific rights apply.
A service of: LHEA at NASA / GSFC
& Michigan Tech. U.
Based on Astronomy Picture Of the Day
Publications with keywords: Europa
Publications with words: Europa