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12 May 2020
New evidence of watery plumes on Jupiter’s moon Europa
Scientists are keen to explore beneath Europa’s thick blanket of ice, and they can do so indirectly by hunting for evidence of activity emanating from below. A new study published in the AGU journal Geophysical Research Letters, did exactly this.
Sounding Saturn’s depths with its seismic icy rings
The secrets of Saturn’s veiled interior are leaking out by way of the planet’s spectacular rings, according to a line of research that has taken four decades to come to fruition. In the last few years, what was first considered a sort of wacky hypothesis – that scientists can use Saturn’s rings to learn about its structure — has turned into a singular window into Saturn’s surprisingly fluid and leviathan depths.
14 January 2020
Final images from Cassini spacecraft
For the last leg of its journey, Cassini was put on a particularly daring orbit passing between Saturn and its rings which brought it closer to Saturn than ever before. This allowed scientists to obtain images of Saturn’s ultraviolet auroras in unprecedented resolution. The new observations are detailed in two new studies published in the AGU journals.
3 December 2019
New study finds the mix that makes Titan’s lakes spew nitrogen bubbles
In a new study published in AGU’s journal Geophysical Research Letters, researchers simulated Titan’s lakes in a pressurized chamber. They found the right combination of methane, ethane and nitrogen crucial for bubbles to form. It is possible these bubble outbreaks are strong enough to shape river deltas in bodies of liquid on the moon.
1 October 2019
Water distribution affects exoplanets’ habitable zone
A new study finds land planets, which have equal to or less than 10 percent of the volume of Earth’s water, can remain habitable at a closer distance to their host star if most of their water is at the planet’s poles. This means the habitable zone for these types of planets may be different than previously assumed.
23 September 2019
Ice islands on Mars and Pluto could reveal past climate change
Many of the craters of Mars and Pluto feature relatively small ice islands unattached to their polar ice caps. These ice islands could be records of past climate change on Mars and Pluto, and could also provide clues about the workings of Martian water and ice, according to a new study in AGU’s Journal of Geophysical Research: Planets.
New study complicates theory that ancient impact pierced Moon’s crust
A new study finds the crater’s crust mainly consists of a common lunar crustal mineral not detected in earlier analyses. The new results suggest the basin floor may not have exposed lunar mantle material as previously reported. “We are not seeing the mantle materials at the (Chang’E 4) landing site as expected,” said Hao Zhang, a planetary scientist at the China University of Geosciences, Wuhan, China, and a co-author of the new study.
18 September 2019
New study suggests gigantic masses in Earth’s mantle untouched for more than 4 billion years
Ancient, distinct, continent-sized regions of rocks, isolated since before the collision that created the Moon 4.5 billion years ago, exist hundreds of miles below the Earth’s crust, offering a window into the building blocks of our planet, according to new research.
5 September 2019
Making sense of Saturn’s impossible rotation
Saturn may be doing a little electromagnetic shimmy and twist which has been throwing off attempts by scientists to determine how long it takes for the planet to rotate on its axis, according to a new study.
3 September 2019
Mercury’s ancient magnetic field likely evolved over time
Mercury’s ancient magnetic poles were far from the location of its poles today, implying its magnetic field, like Earth’s, changed over time, a new study says.