On the Saturnian moon Enceladus, jets of powdery snow and water vapor, laden with organic compounds, vent from the “tiger stripes,” warm gashes in the surface. How can a body just over 500 kilometers across sustain such vigorous activity?There's much more in the full length article about Endeladus at the link.
The answer may be the presence of underground fluids, perhaps a sea, which would increase the efficiency of heating by tidal effects. Support for this idea has come from recent flybys.
If Enceladus has liquid water, it joins Mars and Jupiter’s moon Europa as one of the prime places in the solar system to look for extraterrestrial life.
Sunday, November 30, 2008
Fly me to the moon
From Scientific American
Posted by Hume's Ghost at 11/30/2008