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Current Affairs

Glowing Jupiter’s moon

Date: 17 November 2020 Tags: Space

Issue

NASA study has found that Jupiter’s moon Europa can glow in the dark due to radiation.

 

Background

The Europa moon already has generated interest because of the possibility of some source of life in the vast ocean. 

 

Details

  • This research was conducted in a laboratory where scientists cloned the conditions of the celestial object.

  • The instrument used to get the result is Ice Chamber for Europa’s High-Energy Electron and Radiation Environment Testing (ICE-HEART).

  • Jupiter pounds Europa’s icy surface with electrons round the clock. This leads to the interaction of molecules present beneath the moon’s surface further resulting in the glowing of its dark side.

  • Researchers came to the conclusion that the reason behind it glowing in the dark is the radiation it receives from the largest planet of our solar system.

  • The research team also believes that its surface may contain common salt found on our planet as well which helps it glow in the dark.

  • The reason behind the icy glow can also include salts like magnesium sulfate and sodium chloride.

  • NASA will conduct further research using the Europa Clipper mission, which will conduct flyby near the orbit of the moon. This will help scientists understand whether their hypothesis was correct or not.