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 Ingredientes clave para la vida en una luna de Júpiter infographic
El gráfico muestra la estructura de Europa y los sitios en los que el Telescopio Espacial James Webb ha detectado cristales de dióxido de carbono helado.


Una luna de Júpiter alberga ingredientes esenciales para la vida

By Phil Bainbridge

September 27, 2023 - Imágenes del Telescopio Espacial James Webb (JWST) revelan que la luna Europa de Júpiter puede tener dióxido de carbono en el océano bajo su capahelada, lo que significa que podría albergar condiciones adecuadas para la vida.

Europa is one of a handful of worlds in our solar system that could potentially sustain life. Previous research has shown that beneath its water-ice crust lies a salty ocean of liquid water with a rocky seafloor, with salt detected at the surface by Hubble in 2019.

Two independent studies, based on images from JWST, have now concluded that frozen crystals of carbon dioxide found on the surface of Europa originated in the ocean, and not from any external source. The highest concentrations were found in an area known as Tara Regio, a geologically young area of “chaos terrain”, so called because when plumes of warmer water rise to the surface the ice melts, breaks and refreezes, forming chaotic patterns and angles.

The rising water, it is suspected, brings carbon dioxide, salt and other material to the surface, much like deep ocean hydrothermal vents on Earth.

PUBLISHED: 27/09/2023; STORY: Graphic News