Europa, Jupiter’s icy
moon, almost certainly has a vast ocean beneath its icy shell.
scientists believe this ocean
contains more water than all of Earth’s oceans combined.
The complex chemistry required
for life to exist requires liquid water, making this ocean one of the key reasons astrobiologists want to study Europa.
NASA’s Europa Clipper will be
equipped with science instruments needed to study Europa to see if it harbors conditions suitable for supporting life.
It is expected to launch
in 2024 and take several years to reach Jupiter.
The main body of NASA’s Europa
Clipper spacecraft has just been delivered to the agency’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) in Southern California.