Share on Google Plus Share on Twitter Share on Facebook Share on LinkedIn Share on PInterest Share on Fark! Share on Reddit Share on StumbleUpon Tell A Friend
Printer Friendly Page Save As Favorite View Favorites View Stats
No comments


Astronomy Picture of the Day: Aug 4, 2013 -- Io's Surface: Under Construction

By OpEdNews admin   ()     Permalink
Related Topic(s): , Add Tags

View Ratings | Rate It

View Astronomy Picture of the Day Archives

Aug 4, 2013


Io's Surface: Under Construction
Image Credit & Copyright: Astronomy Picture of the Day -- http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/astropix.html

Courtesy of http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/astropix.html
Like the downtown area of your favorite city and any self-respecting web site ... Io's surface is constantly under construction. This moon of Jupiter holds the distinction of being the Solar System's most volcanically active body -- its bizarre looking surface continuously formed and reformed by lava flows. Generated using 1996 data from NASA's Galileo spacecraft, this high resolution composite image is centered on the side of Io that always faces away from Jupiter. It has been enhanced to emphasize Io's surface brightness and color variations, revealing features as small as 1.5 miles across. The notable absence of impact craters suggests that the entire surface is covered with new volcanic deposits much more rapidly than craters are created. What drives this volcanic powerhouse? A likely energy source is the changing gravitational tides caused by Jupiter and the other Galilean moons as Io orbits the massive gas giant planet. Heating Io's interior, the pumping tides would generate the sulfurous volcanic activity.

 

Related Topic(s): , Add Tags

Comments

The time limit for entering new comments on this astronomy picture has expired.

This limit can be removed. Our paid membership program is designed to give you many benefits, such as removing this time limit. To learn more, please click here.

Comments: Expand   Shrink   Hide  
No comments