NASA: Evidence of water vapor found on Jupiter moon

Scientists said Thursday they have found evidence of water vapor in the atmosphere of one of Jupiter’s moons, NASA said.

>> Read more trending news

In a news release, NASA said its Hubble Space Telescope observations of Europa, an icy moon that is 90% the size of Earth’s moon, revealed the presence of “persistent water vapor” in one of the satellite’s hemisphere.

The discovery confirms research in November 2019, when an international research team led by NASA announced they had detected water vapor for the first time above Europa’s surface.

Europa has a large ocean underneath its icy surface, NASA said in its release, adding that such conditions could be hospitable to sustain life. NASA added that Europa has a very smooth surface and the solid ice crust looks like cracked eggshell.

The Hubble telescope photographed plumes erupting through the ice in 2013, NASA said. The agency compared the plumes to geysers but said they extended more than 60 miles above the satellite’s surface.

The new results were gleaned from a new analysis of Hubble archival images and spectra, using a technique that recently resulted in the discovery of water vapor in the atmosphere of Ganymede, in another moon of Jupiter, by Lorenz Roth of the KTH Royal Institute of Technology, Space and Plasma Physics in Sweden.

“The observation of water vapor on Ganymede, and on the trailing side of Europa, advances our understanding of the atmospheres of icy moons,” Roth said in a statement. “However, the detection of a stable water abundance on Europa is a bit more surprising than on Ganymede because Europa’s surface temperatures are lower than Ganymede’s.”

On AirMy Magic 94.9 - Tampa Bay's Best Music Logo

Swimming is a great recreational sport that can be enjoyed by people of all ages, especially here in Florida. But it’s important to know how to be safe while you’re in the water.

Win tickets to concerts, unique experiences, great prizes and MORE!

Get weather news that matters, including forecast and radar from 10 News!

See a new furry friend up for adoption every week, brought to you by Purina Beyond!

See Danielle rap all of your favorite kid’s books!

mobile apps

Everything you love about and more! Tap on any of the buttons below to download our app.

amazon alexa

Enable our Skill today to listen live at home on your Alexa Devices!