Wanted to post on my latest adventures regarding the Plutonians, err Pluto, thanks goes to the New Horizons mission and all of the people who post and
write about it, giving me the opportunity to explore this and write smart-seeming things. Do keep in mind everything I write here and elsewhere is
subject to large error and speculation.
It's regarding whether or not there're any liquid seas or oceans underneath Pluto's surface.
So first thing.... There does not appear to be a significant equatoral bulge. This could be the result of the ice flows reducing it. This could
indicate a liquid layer somewhere. The idea is at some point in the past Pluto spun much more rapidly, producing a bulge, but because the planet still
has a liquid layer and its rotation has greatly decreased, the bulge has reduced to insignificant levels. But if the planet has too little bulge maybe
that would suggest the planet is very dense, never had any oceans, so never had an appreciable bulge?
Second, there're indications of many ice flows, especially in the recent images. This means the ice has high enough viscosity to flow, but it also
means heat is being taken away from any possible liquids below the ice, meaning liquid seas or oceans beneath the flowing ice are less and less
Thirdly, any underlying ocean layer should produce tension on the surface, observed as stretches. Squeezed or compressed tensional features would
indicate a solid, not a liquid layer beneath. And these should be visible on the entire planet if it's a planet-wide subsurface ocean.
Fourth, it seems the ice flows in the newest images result from the ice collecting and weighing down on itself. AS a reuslt of all the weight, it
pushes down and outward, filling in areas and expanding out like a thick liquid. That's why it looks like a frozen milky cream (to my eyes). It's not
tied to a layer of liquid underneath, like I'd otherwise think.
Fifth, there's indications of some internal heating deep inside Pluto, due to its young surface. This might stem from the fact the collision which
created Charon happened relatively recently. Or it could mean an abundance of radioactive materials? In any case, if the impact DID happen more
recently than thought, it's possible some ocean or sea is still remaining, surviving on the remnant heating which was creating during the collision
and the ensuing chaos as they were aligning to each other. Now that they're locked to each other and time has passed, much of that heating has been
Here's an old link about the possibilty of subsurface oceans from 2010:
www.thefreelibrary.com - Pluto may be
warm enough to harbour ocean beneath its ice shell....
And if there indeed is an ocean on the planet, the surface should show cracks created as Pluto gradually lost heat and the ice cap thickened over
billions of years. That's because the freezing ice would have expanded, causing the surface to bulge upward, cracking in the process. If there was
only ice, and never an ocean, the cooling of the planet should have contracted the ice rather than expanded it. Once formed, ice contracts as it
edit on 25-7-2015 by jonnywhite because: (no reason given)