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Thursday, March 6, 2014

Life speculation under the Europa's ice

U.S. National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) planned robotic mission to Europa, the allegedly watery moon on Jupiter. Astronomers speculate, there are some forms of life. NASA set up a fund worth U.S $15 million, equivalent to Rp. 172.5 billion over the 2015 budget, as the early stages of the mission.
This Feb. 13, 1979 photo released by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory on Feb. 22, 1979 shows the planet Jupiter and two of its moons, Io, left, and Europa, center. (Picture from: http://www.ctvnews.ca/)
There are no further details, but the head of financial services of NASA, Elizabeth Robinson, on Tuesday, March 4, 2014 said that it is the mission's which targeted to launch and accomplished in 2020.

Robinson said, highly irradiated environment around Jupiter, and the distance from the Earth, will be a challenge in this mission. When NASA's Galileo mission to Jupiter that launched in 1989, the spacecraft took six years to reach on the orbit of fifth planet on Our Solar System.
Europa, one of Jupiters moons. (Picture from: http://guillebot.deviantart.com/)
Laurie Leshin, an Astronomers from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, said that the NASA plan can be termed as a daring mission to determine the condition of an object that is very interesting in Our Solar System.

Previous NASA missions to Europa, notably Galileo mission, none really concentrated on one of the dozens of satellites that rotating on Jupiter's orbit. Astronomers have long sought a special mission for Europa, but constrained by the cost of which is estimated to reach billions of dollars.

In 2013, scientists found water bursts through the icy surface of Europa. "Approaching the satellite surface, through the bursts line would cut the cost of exploration. The cheaper costs than swirling around the Europa or landed on its icy surface," said Robert Pappalardo, a NASA scientist who handles Europa.

Many ideas will be developed related to the Europa mission plan. Robinson also acknowledges that many ideas that led to the costs required for the mission can not be estimated at this time. According to her, the main mission to Europa is looking for traces of life on the liquid suspected to exist beneath the ice sheet.

Avi Loeb, an astronomer of Harvard University, said that the mission to Europa would be more exciting than exploring Mars is dry. "Maybe there are fish under the (Europa) ice," he said. *** [EKA | FROM VARIOUS SOURCES | CTV NEWS] 
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