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Europa - Attempt a Landing There.

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posted on Mar, 28 2018 @ 06:03 AM
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a reply to: AnkhMorpork

I absolutely support the idea of sending a probe to Europa. We do have life forms in the deepest parts of our oceans where there is no light with freezing temperature and enormous pressure. According to science, Europa ice covered oceans are very similar, so in my mind, the question is not that would we find life there, but rather, what if we don't find anything where it would be highly possible...




posted on Mar, 28 2018 @ 06:36 AM
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a reply to: AnkhMorpork

Unless there are major advances in the next few years, with regard to the ways in which we utilise and shield our surroundings from the worst effects of radioactive material that we have used for fuel or power, we should avoid as much as possible, ever taking nuclear material on a voyage to anywhere, leave alone a place which may well contain life.

Going to Europa with the intention of finding a way through the crust and into the ocean beneath the icy surface, is surely a noble and desirable goal. But the craft which makes the landing will have to be pristine, totally clean of any possible contaminant, no cells, no microbes, no chemicals which might break down and damage the ecology we may find on Europa, and there must be absolutely NO nuclear material on board the object which breaks into the world ocean.

Its bad enough that we are destroying our own planets oceans with radioactive substances. I think the Fukushima situation proves that we are not wise and technologically advanced enough to make sending radioactive materials onto other worlds, without risking destroying everything we would seek to discover, a practical, achievable goal. If the price of locating other life in the universe requires that it dies at our hands, then I for one would rather we discovered nothing more, even though my strongest desire is to know a greater portion of our universe and its content and function.

There may well be a way to secure access to the world ocean that is the interior of Europa, but unless we can get that access in a way that can do no harm, then we ought to wait until we get smarter and more capable as a species, before attempting it. Melting part of it to gain access, using nuclear fuels on a potentially life carrying moon... these are not the actions of a responsible species.
edit on 28-3-2018 by TrueBrit because: (no reason given)



posted on Mar, 28 2018 @ 07:31 AM
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a reply to: AnkhMorpork

Europa is certainly an interesting looking place...

I was curious about how deep one could reasonably dive considering how deep the ocean allegedly is, coupled with a measly .13G gravity.

I wonder if anyone had worked out a model for the potential currents caused by the tidal forces. Along with orbiting Jupiter, its orbit is also between Ganymede and Io.


Every couple days or so itll fly by them at a distance significantly less than our lunar distance (which is known to create significant tides in a shallow ocean with way more gravity.) Not to mention the minor effects caused by the other 65 or so moons...
Food for thought.

Or you could makeep a super size neutrino telescope out of it, long as the ice has reasonable optical qualities. IceCube Telescope

Or even utilizing the water, perhaps at much greater depths or longer "strings" ANTARES

After reading all the "we're just barely going to mars" comments, I'll admit it does sound a bit crazy and far fetched... Once asteroid mining and mars colonies are underway it might make a bit more sense after all that, see you in 50 years


-Driver



posted on Mar, 28 2018 @ 08:51 AM
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Due to tidal forces the surface literally cracks. There is no need to drill or melt through the ice. A probe could simply dive in a crack.

A trip to Europa is 1 of 2 big missions being voted on by NASA right now and it seems to be the favorite.

All the ingredients for life are there. I would be a bit stunned if at least no simple life was found. The mission would be a treasure trove for science either way.



posted on Mar, 28 2018 @ 10:55 AM
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originally posted by: AnkhMorpork
a reply to: RadioRobert


But, everyone is ready to go to Mars.. to make a dusty base there and try to build a biodome or something, how much would that cost?

The potential return is too high to ignore, and the idea of a submersible probe cruising around in the Europan ocean.. finding a heat source on the ocean floor....

I thought that scientific discovery is what it's all about..


Thank you. And for any info.


Not to be a debbie downer here, but perhaps some reality checks.

We have actually had more people on the surface of the moon then we have the bottom of our own ocean, did you know that? So chancing a manned mission using submersibles while fascinating seems highly unlikely unless some new form of propulsion makes it far less dangerous, expensive and time consuming...



posted on Mar, 28 2018 @ 11:41 AM
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originally posted by: Illumimasontruth

A trip to Europa is 1 of 2 big missions being voted on by NASA right now and it seems to be the favorite.

All the ingredients for life are there.

Interesting! Do you have any more info on that. Can you give us an outline or update? Thank you.

Is the plane to penetrate the ice and then seek out a heat vent?



posted on Mar, 28 2018 @ 03:59 PM
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originally posted by: AnkhMorpork

originally posted by: Illumimasontruth

A trip to Europa is 1 of 2 big missions being voted on by NASA right now and it seems to be the favorite.

All the ingredients for life are there.

Interesting! Do you have any more info on that. Can you give us an outline or update? Thank you.

Is the plane to penetrate the ice and then seek out a heat vent?
The winning mission will be announced early next year. The other mission would be a probe landing on an asteroid, which has already been done of course. I read the article a couple weeks back on space.com and can't remember anymore specifics.

Great site for space junkies.



posted on Mar, 28 2018 @ 04:19 PM
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originally posted by: Illumimasontruth
Due to tidal forces the surface literally cracks. There is no need to drill or melt through the ice. A probe could simply dive in a crack.

A trip to Europa is 1 of 2 big missions being voted on by NASA right now and it seems to be the favorite.

All the ingredients for life are there. I would be a bit stunned if at least no simple life was found. The mission would be a treasure trove for science either way.



Ingredients for carbon based life yes.

Who know what other forms of life exist in the universe that aren't at all like any forms of life in our own wee corner.



posted on Mar, 28 2018 @ 04:31 PM
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Actually there are mission plans to send a probe to Europa and get down under the ice. However, one of the things that the experts are trying to figure out is how to get a probe from earth, onto Europa without any organic material on it. That is the biggest hold up, that way if there is any life on the planet it will not contaminate or ruin the results.



posted on Mar, 28 2018 @ 04:44 PM
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I pondered this within earshot of my 9 year old all-things-science nerd daughter.

Me: "I wonder if anybody will ever go to Europa and see what's there some day."

Her: "Uh, YEAH they will, when I'm a teenager. It's called Europa Clipper. Where have you been, mom?" < dramatic kid eye roll >

I knew one was in the works, but had no idea it was named now. Geeky kid wins.

It's an orbital survey mission, which I can't scoff at. You need basic surveying done before you can even build a house, this is a bit more important to survey first than that. Helps to know what we'd be getting into first BEFORE we go sub-ice. Europa Clipper mission info.



posted on Mar, 28 2018 @ 05:48 PM
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The problem i see is communication.

How is the submarine going to send any data through, for example 5 or 10 miles or more, thickness of perma-ice? You cant send data by radio waves through the ice. You cant use a cable, you cant use a tube for said cable, any shift in the ice would sever it. Its not energy efficient to go submerge then rise through the ice to send data?

And what about the pressure of the ice and then any liquid (think Mariana Trench, immense pressures)? Ice movement would be like earthquakes, and would destroy a submarine no matter how strong you build it.

The more instruments for science, the more data to send, even more if you add photos, and you can forget video.



posted on Mar, 28 2018 @ 07:00 PM
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a reply to: Nyiah

Thank you so much for this!

Here's the video from that link

An orbital survey first makes sense.

Could be any sort of probe drilling down through the ice could be swept away on a powerful current and lost.

They appear to be using this mission to get the needed data to do it - to get into that ocean under the ice and detect and examine the life that is likely to exist there in some form or another.

Depending on it's orientation, magnetosphere and orbital characteristics, the search for warmer water would be required to pick a suitable location. If there's life in that ocean, while it could be ubiquitous at some level, it's likely to occur within a certain band or relative to a vent or vents on the ocean floor, but who knows what kind of currents might exist. Nevertheless there are probably places of relative equilibrium in the chaotic flows, like a strange attractor.

Life also requires a certain level of stability and consistency in it's environment, in order to take hold and evolve.

I would suspect that this mission will be searching for the best possible location on the moon to land and drill/melt down through the ice.

One would think for communications that a surface probe would spool out a cable.

Clipper Mission to survey it first. Makes perfect sense.

P.S. How cute and smart your daughter is. Sounds like she might have the makings of a future science wiz!

Maybe in her adult life she'll be among those who will design this future mission to discover life in Europa's ocean..


One other possibility for another super-cool scientific mission of discovery in our solar system would be Saturn's largest moon, Titan, which has a rivers lakes and oceans.



Titan is primarily composed of water ice and rocky material. Much as with Venus before the Space Age, the dense opaque atmosphere prevented understanding of Titan's surface until new information from the Cassini–Huygens mission in 2004, including the discovery of liquid hydrocarbon lakes in Titan's polar regions.

The geologically young surface is generally smooth, with few impact craters, although mountains and several possible cryovolcanoes have been found.

The atmosphere of Titan is largely nitrogen; minor components lead to the formation of methane and ethane clouds and nitrogen-rich organic smog.

The climate—including wind and rain—creates surface features similar to those of Earth, such as dunes, rivers, lakes, seas (probably of liquid methane and ethane), and deltas, and is dominated by seasonal weather patterns as on Earth. With its liquids (both surface and subsurface) and robust nitrogen atmosphere, Titan's methane cycle is analogous to Earth's water cycle, at the much lower temperature of about 94 K (−179.2 °C).

In which case the probe would take the form of a boat designed to float on a sea of liquid methane.

I'd predict that aside from Europa, this is also a place where they'll do an orbital survey and land, and float around.

Let's go see what's in store there shall we?

Bingo!

Titan Saturn System Mission


Titan Saturn System Mission (TSSM) was a joint NASA–ESA proposal for an exploration of Saturn and its moons Titan and Enceladus,[1] where many complex phenomena were revealed by Cassini. With an estimated NASA cost of $2.5 billion (FY07), TSSM was proposed to launch in 2020, get gravity assists from Earth and Venus, and arrive at the Saturn system in 2029. The 4-year prime mission would include a two-year Saturn tour, a 2-month Titan aero-sampling phase, and a 20-month Titan orbit phase.

In 2009, a mission to Jupiter and its moons was given priority over Titan Saturn System Mission,[3] although TSSM will continue to be assessed for possible development and launch.

The Titan Saturn System Mission (TSSM) was officially created in January 2009 by the merging of the ESA's Titan and Enceladus Mission (TandEM) with NASA's Titan Explorer (2007) study,[4] although plans to combine both concepts date at least back to early 2008. TSSM was competing against the Europa Jupiter System Mission (EJSM) proposal for funding, and in February 2009 it was announced that NASA/ESA had given EJSM priority ahead of TSSM.[5][6] TSSM will continue to be studied for a later launch date, probably sometime in the 2020s.

Detailed assessment reports of the mission elements[7] as well as a specific concept for a lake-landing module for Titan's lakes called Titan Mare Explorer (TiME) with the potential of becoming a part of the TSSM have been proposed in February and October 2009, respectively.

The TSSM may be revived and launched on the SLS super-heavy-lift rocket.


I hope they put it back on the docket. That would really float my boat.

Some day, there'll be a submersible probe at Europa and a floating one on Titan, either of which to see would be absolutely extraordinary and might provide great insight into the formation of planets and moons for all future study beyond our solar system using super massive radio telescopes.

Some day in the not too distance future a sound theory of planetary and satellite formation will come into view, which would apply as much to our own solar system as to any other, and when they do I'll betcha dollars to donuts that it will be based on a dynamic analogous to MUSIC or "the music of the spheres".

And then, as we look at the other solar systems in much greater detail, I predict that something very astonishing is going to materialize about the nature of the universe, including our own place in it as an expression of cosmic evolutionary history, which probably doesn't really take place in isolation the way we think it does according to our current Newtonian type paradigm and worldview.

Perhaps then the aliens might land and say - welcome to the neighborhood!

Best regards,

AnkhMorpork, esq.

edit on 28-3-2018 by AnkhMorpork because: (no reason given)



posted on Mar, 29 2018 @ 06:48 PM
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a reply to: AnkhMorpork

Do you have any idea of the energy required to melt through 20-25KM of ice?

We have that ability on earth, but not remotely. Our probe would get stuck and frozen solid before it ever came close to the possible water ocean on europa.



posted on Mar, 29 2018 @ 07:06 PM
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originally posted by: Illumimasontruth
Due to tidal forces the surface literally cracks. There is no need to drill or melt through the ice. A probe could simply dive in a crack.

Well yea, as far as the crack went. We know it's not all the way down. Surface cracks won't get us to the subterranean areas we would like to go to.

We don't have the tech to get to Europa's oceans.

The best we could hope for would be outposts on europa that eventually could generate the energy to get there, but that would require a lot of effort also.



posted on Mar, 29 2018 @ 11:35 PM
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a reply to: Vector99

We could land a heated mining drill probe of some kind on that moon and drill and melt through the ice. It's doable.

Only question is where to try that and what might be encountered when you finally punch through into the salt water ocean below, and thus the survey mission the Clipper Mission.

www.jpl.nasa.gov...

How to determine water flow under the ice, that would be a big question once the ocean is proven as a result of that survey, which would probably also determine variations in the thickness and temp of the ice crust of that world.

If you're young, it will happen in your lifetime, mark my words.

Best regards,

Ankh

edit on 29-3-2018 by AnkhMorpork because: (no reason given)



posted on Mar, 30 2018 @ 07:42 AM
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a reply to: AnkhMorpork



We could land a heated mining drill probe of some kind on that moon and drill and melt through the ice. It's doable.

Theoretically. And also literally, however we do not have the tech to pull it off.

Europa's Icy shell at it's thinnest points is estimated to be 18KM thick. The energy required to melt through that amount of ice is insane and not available with current tech.



posted on Mar, 30 2018 @ 08:16 AM
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What's the plan to keep it powered? Without the sun as a power source I'm not sure how long it could continue working.



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