Europa stands as one of the most compelling heavenly bodies in our solar system. It’s Jupiter’s sixth moon, a frozen shell with one fairly powerful secret: There’s possibly more liquid water under its icy surface than there is on Planet Earth.
In fact, data gathered from NASA’s Galileo probe suggests Europa has a “volume 2-3 times the volume of water in Earth’s oceans.”
What could this mean? Life? Another source of clean water? A hidden, underwater civilization like the Gungans of Naboo (that’s probably stretching it, thankfully)?
We’ve long known of Europa’s subterranean oceans. But with every new detail you can’t help but wonder.
Let’s get that space drill ready and go check it out.
The above image, by the way, is NASA’s Astronomy Picture of the Day and courtesy Kevin Hand (JPL/Caltech). It shows a comparison between the water in Europa’s hidden oceans and the water on Earth, if both volumes were collected into separate spheres. Apparently, Europa’s water sphere would have “a radius of 877 kilometers,” compared to Earth’s “700 kilometers.”