The Europa Ocean Discovery mission

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Since it was first proposed that tidal heating of Europa by Jupiter might lead to liquid water oceans below Europa`s ice cover, there has been speculation over the possible exobiological implications of such an ocean. Liquid water is the essential ingredient for life as it is known, and the existence of a second water ocean in the Solar System would be of paramount importance for seeking the origin and existence of life beyond Earth. The authors present here a Discovery-class mission concept (Europa Ocean Discovery) to determine the existence of a liquid water ocean on Europa and to characterize Europa`s ... continued below

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14 p.

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Edwards, B.C.; Chyba, C.F. & Abshire, J.B. June 1, 1997.

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This article is part of the collection entitled: Office of Scientific & Technical Information Technical Reports and was provided by UNT Libraries Government Documents Department to Digital Library, a digital repository hosted by the UNT Libraries. More information about this article can be viewed below.

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  • Edwards, B.C. Los Alamos National Lab., NM (United States)
  • Chyba, C.F. Univ. of Arizona, Tucson, AZ (United States)
  • Abshire, J.B. National Aeronautics and Space Administration, Greenbelt, MD (United States). Goddard Space Flight Center

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Description

Since it was first proposed that tidal heating of Europa by Jupiter might lead to liquid water oceans below Europa`s ice cover, there has been speculation over the possible exobiological implications of such an ocean. Liquid water is the essential ingredient for life as it is known, and the existence of a second water ocean in the Solar System would be of paramount importance for seeking the origin and existence of life beyond Earth. The authors present here a Discovery-class mission concept (Europa Ocean Discovery) to determine the existence of a liquid water ocean on Europa and to characterize Europa`s surface structure. The technical goal of the Europa Ocean Discovery mission is to study Europa with an orbiting spacecraft. This goal is challenging but entirely feasible within the Discovery envelope. There are four key challenges: entering Europan orbit, generating power, surviving long enough in the radiation environment to return valuable science, and complete the mission within the Discovery program`s launch vehicle and budget constraints. The authors will present here a viable mission that meets these challenges.

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14 p.

Notes

OSTI as DE97007418

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  • Annual meeting of the Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers, San Diego, CA (United States), 27 Jul - 1 Aug 1997

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  • Other: DE97007418
  • Report No.: LA-UR--97-1695
  • Report No.: CONF-970706--1
  • Grant Number: W-7405-ENG-36
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 486164
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc680121

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Office of Scientific & Technical Information Technical Reports

Reports, articles and other documents harvested from the Office of Scientific and Technical Information.

Office of Scientific and Technical Information (OSTI) is the Department of Energy (DOE) office that collects, preserves, and disseminates DOE-sponsored research and development (R&D) results that are the outcomes of R&D projects or other funded activities at DOE labs and facilities nationwide and grantees at universities and other institutions.

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Creation Date

  • June 1, 1997

Added to The UNT Digital Library

  • July 25, 2015, 2:21 a.m.

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  • Feb. 25, 2016, 4:27 p.m.

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Edwards, B.C.; Chyba, C.F. & Abshire, J.B. The Europa Ocean Discovery mission, article, June 1, 1997; New Mexico. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc680121/: accessed December 15, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.