Talal Tayyab​

Year: 2018-19

Talal Tayyab​

School: The City School Bahawalpur Campus

City: Bahawalpur

"Jupiter has always intrigued me, as it is the largest planet in the solar system, eclipsing everyone in size except the sun of course. However, something more mysterious is, its moons. One of the jovian moons Europa, which is also part of the Galilean moons is just that, mysterious. It is tidally with one side facing Jupiter at all times. The reason that Europa is interesting is not what is on its surface, but rather, what is beneath it.

First of all, Europa has an icy crust which is cooled enough but underneath that ice, there might be subsurface ocean compassing the entire satellite. Now what we don’t know about this ocean is its temperature or even if it has life! And that’s why I would love to see NASA sending their probe to examine the moon because it would answer a huge question about Europa. We see Europa might have oceans warm enough for organisms to exist. The ocean, in which they would reside in, could also like those on oceans in Earth. The ocean woud be heated by tidal heating. In my opinion, Europa is a better v=candidate for life than Titan, a moon of Saturn, because water acts as better biological solvent than ethane and Methane. Also because Europa’s surface is ice. , the constant bombardment of radiation by Jupiter allows the hydrogen and oxygen in the ice to combine with other chemicals to form various molecules like O2, CO2 and H2O2.

Right Now, we can only imagine what be beneath that ice and in its hypothetical oceans. Okay, enough of talking about life, Let’s say if NASA lands a probe there and finds no life, then how about colonization. Well, colonization there might be similar to what was stated in the Artemis project back in 1997. It is said that the explorers will first go down the surface into the oceans and then find or create a pocket between the ocean and the crust and then proceed to make a base there. The ice would protect them from the radiation at the surface and the water would render a suitable environment for the humans. I hope that NASA would launch a Mission like this because this would, in my opinion, make a really nice stopover point for space ships heading further out in the solar system if colony was set up.

Europa, to me is-for the lack of a better word- very mystifying. It is one of the few places aside from Earthwhere life might be possible. A mission to Europa could answer the questions of the ocean, the hydrothermal vents, and of life. However in the end there will always be more questions than answers in the vast universe around us."

“The Universe is under no obligation to make sense to you”
- Neil deGrass Tyson

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