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, 289 (5483), 1340-3

Galileo Magnetometer Measurements: A Stronger Case for a Subsurface Ocean at Europa

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Galileo Magnetometer Measurements: A Stronger Case for a Subsurface Ocean at Europa

M G Kivelson et al. Science.

Abstract

On 3 January 2000, the Galileo spacecraft passed close to Europa when it was located far south of Jupiter's magnetic equator in a region where the radial component of the magnetospheric magnetic field points inward toward Jupiter. This pass with a previously unexamined orientation of the external forcing field distinguished between an induced and a permanent magnetic dipole moment model of Europa's internal field. The Galileo magnetometer measured changes in the magnetic field predicted if a current-carrying outer shell, such as a planet-scale liquid ocean, is present beneath the icy surface. The evidence that Europa's field varies temporally strengthens the argument that a liquid ocean exists beneath the present-day surface.

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