Search for hidden oceans in the solar system

Search for hidden oceans in the solar system

It's a geophysical phenomenon that makes science fiction screenwriters dream, astrophysicists think, and space agencies get excited. Some of the natural moons of Jupiter and Saturn hold oceans beneath their icy surface, the volume of which exceeds, sometimes more than double, the volume of all Earth's waters combined!

It is enough to encourage NASA to ensure the launch without significant delay of the Europa Clipper mission, planned for October 10, 2024. This is the condition to hope to reach Europa, one of Jupiter's moons, in the spring of 2031, before the arrival of Joss. The Jupiter Icy Moons Explorer (short for Jupiter Icy Moons Explorer), its competitor from the European Space Agency (ESA); Launched in April 2023 from the Kourou base (Guyana), the latter is already on its way. By crossing the solar system via a less direct route than the one planned by the American ship, Joyce should reach the celestial body only in July 2032. In principle, it is too late to win the duel from a distance.

This race is above all symbolic. Successfully crossing Jupiter's dangerous radiation belts and flying over Europa is a technological achievement that both teams would legitimately like to announce. In the end, they will carry out complementary work and will be asked to cooperate in this adventure, entirely dedicated to the study of these hidden oceans of the solar system.

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By aiming their instrument batteries at the moons Europa, Ganymede and Callisto, Europa's Clipper and Juice probes (which should also be monitoring Jupiter) should identify two (or perhaps three) of these liquid spaces, and try to determine whether they could form Environments. Favorable for the maintenance of a form of life…which derives its sustenance from the exploitation of mineral resources. It was possible to travel the entire course of evolution without ever being exposed to light, as it was limited in horizon to the inner walls of a kind of giant aquarium formed by the icy crust enveloping its world.

Potentially habitable oceans hidden in icy satellites with external temperatures approaching -150 degrees Celsius? It's time to put this ancient moon to the test with facts. By reformulating it, without nourishing it with any other evidence than drop by drop, it ran the risk of drying up.

First doubts

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