Day 1 2 Background 2.1 Cosmology 2.1.12 Student Overview Day 2

Mercury ] Venus ] Mars ] Jupiter ] Saturn ] Uranus ] Neptune ] Pluto ] 

Many scientists believe there may be life on Europa, one of Jupiterís moons, because there may be liquid water underneath Europaís surface. If this is true, Europa could support life.

How Did Life Develop on Europa?

An x-ray astronomer named Richard Hoover has a theory that asteroids that hit Earth thousands of years ago may have made such a huge impact that they sent rock, soil, and seawater containing living things from Earth flying out into space.  He believes that these may have landed on Europa.

Europa Probe

Scientists are planning to send out a spacecraft called Europa to land on Jupiter's moon. It will measure the thickness of ice on the surface, which scientists now think is about 3/4 of a mile thick. The probe will use a tool called a radar sounder to bounce radio waves through the ice. The radar sounder will be able to detect any liquid water underneath the surface.

Water = Life

If scientists can find water on Europa, this will show that the planet could support life. The information collected by the Europa probe, combined with detailed pictures collected by the Galileo spacecraft, may lead to more clues about life on Europa.