2018-19 Ethiopia Winner - Target: Europa

Year: 2018-19

Melan Mohammed Shifa

School: Intellectual School

Grade: 11

City: Addis Ababa


Target: Europa

"Europa, the icy Jovian moon is worth exploring due to many reasons, previous missions to Europa, where all flybys so we haven't yet landed on the surface, the most productive flyby mission to Europa was NASA's Galileo Mission it did several flybys, it detected that Jupiter's magnetic field get disturbed around Europa which leads scientists to predict that Europa must contain a conductive fluid that causes these type of magnetic field, scientists predict that global salty ocean might create these which means most probably the water under Europa icy shell might be a salt water. The Hubble space telescope found evidence that Europa might be venting water into space which shows that the moon is active, if these observations are confirmed future missions such us the clipper can study the water plumes on a flyby.

Some of the works of future missions to Europa are, to explore the ocean for any signs of life, since water is the main component of life, if we could find a form of life that would change the way we think about being a living thing. We can study th chemical components of the water under the ice to detect minerals which will be useful in future manned missions to Jupiter and beyond and we can even use the water for many purpose in future missions .

To study more about Europa my plan is to send a lander, on a mission that would look for signs of life and study the chemistry of the water and ice and the mantle beneath the water since it might contain minerals. In order to do these the mission the lander should be loaded with multiple special equipment such as microscope it will allow the lander to examine the water without necessarily waiting for it to return here, we should also load equipment that measure density and PH value of the water, also a drill in case the brown patterns detected by Galileo are not cracks, if they are not cracks we will drill the ice. In order to study the mantle we can board underwater remote control vehicle that withstands high water pressure and attach a camera on it and we must build it to collect sample and after we have sent it there we could let the lander drop it into the water and then we could drive it to the bottom of the ocean and collect sample of rocks we will need to drill it to take samples of it then we need to drive it out and let the lander collect the samples and send it back earth with the water sample.

When I chose Europa I didn't mean that we don't need to study other places but we must start with Europa and continue with rest of the moon to know which one is habitable for us since earth is not stable we need to look for places that could sustain life so we could move some people there and make humanity a multi-planet species."

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