According to the Emirati “Future Observatory” website, a team of NASA scientists has developed a new method to discover what may be located under the surface, based on a strange phenomenon that makes Europe’s moon ice glow in the dark, according to the Ars Technica website.
The NASA team believes that radioactive particles released by Jupiter or its moon Io, which were accelerated thanks to strong magnetic fields, made their way into the ice of Europe. These particles glow at wavelengths of light invisible to the naked eye, according to research published in the journal Nature Astronomy.
Scientists mixed different combinations of salt and water, froze them to a degree close to the lowest theoretical temperature in the universe, and fired a beam of radiation at them. The team found that the glow changes depending on the ingredients, which gives them a way to explore Europe’s oceans without drilling the ice. Certain color flares may reveal a chemical composition that allows for organic life, which could mean the possibility of living organisms on Europe.
The brine solutions found in Europe’s oceans may be more complex than the solutions scientists have tested, but the glow-detection technology could be useful for future planned missions to Europe, and scientists have years to improve the tools used.