Europa, in astronomy

Europa yo͝orōˈpə [key], in astronomy, one of the 39 known moons, or natural satellites, of Jupiter. Magnetic-field data collected by the space probe Galileo in 2002 strongly indicated a liquid-water ocean—similar to oceans found on Earth and possibly capable of supporting simple life forms—beneath Europa's frozen surface, and the Hubble space telescope has found evidence of possible plumes of water being ejected from Europa into space.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2024, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

See more Encyclopedia articles on: Astronomy: General