The research conducted by NASA of Jupiter’s moon Europa, has been successful in its first mission and is now gearing up for its second phase of the mission, which is to move into the developmental phase known as formulation.
NASA’s mission is to search for existence of life on Europa.
John Grunsfled, associate administrator for NASA’s Science Mission Directorate has stated that the next step from concept to mission in the journey to find life beyond our own planet Earth is being taken.
It is time to answer one of humanity’s most philosophical questions and during observing Europa over the last two decades, many clues have been found that could lead to an astounding answer to this question.
In the 1990’s when NASA’s Galileo mission to Jupiter took place, it gathered vital evidence towards the theory that Europa has an ocean beneath its icy exterior.
Europa is about the size of Earth’s moon and if this theory is proven correct, this ocean would hold more than two times as much groundwater as Earth along with salt water, rocky sea floor and energy provided by tidal heating. Thus making Europa a viable candidate for existence of simple organisms.
NASA’s mission is to launch a spacecraft to Jupiter will happen in the next five years or so, in the 2020’s, a journey of several years it would orbit the planet every two weeks providing many opportunities to send back data.
NASA’s mission plan is to have at least 45 flybys with Europa, during this the spacecraft will be sending back high resolutions visuals of the frozen surface and ot would be able research its composition and interior of its icy shell.