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Scientists create detailed map of Ganymede


Posted on Friday, 14 February, 2014 | Comment icon 5 comments

Ganymede orbits Jupiter once every seven days. Image Credit: NASA / USGS
The largest moon in the solar system has been mapped in unprecedented detail thanks to a new project.
A satellite of Jupiter, Ganymede is larger than both Mercury and Pluto, meaning that if it wasn't circling the gas giant it would most likely be considered a planet in its own right.

With a surface composed of light and dark materials, a mass that is twice that of our moon and the distinct possibility of a subsurface liquid water ocean, Ganymede remains one of the most intriguing bodies in the solar system.

Now scientists have gathered together data collected by the Voyager I, Voyager II and Galileo missions to piece together a complete map of the moon's surface, making it possible for the first time to understand what it might be like for someone visiting this enigmatic world.

"Ganymede is such a big place, and has such a wide variety of features that you can find analogues for other icy satellites," said Geoffrey Collins of Wheaton College. "If you had to pick one icy moon that had the total variety of features found on other moons, you would pick Ganymede."

Source: LA Times | Comments (5)

Tags: Ganymede, Jupiter


 
Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #1 Posted by Waspie_Dwarf on 13 February, 2014, 17:35
Animation of a rotating globe of Jupiter's moon Ganymede, with a geologic map superimposed over a global color mosaic. The 37-second animation begins as a global color mosaic image of the moon then quickly fades in the geologic map. The views incorporate the best available imagery from NASA's Voyager 1 and 2 spacecraft and NASA's Galileo spacecraft. Credit: NASA/JPL/USGS
Comment icon #2 Posted by pallidin on 14 February, 2014, 21:01
Dang. I didnt know it was so large. Another"would be" planet to be sure, if it wasn't in the grips of Jupiter Huh.
Comment icon #3 Posted by alfonso on 14 February, 2014, 23:22
are they the actual colours of the planet?.. it looks amazing
Comment icon #4 Posted by coolguy on 15 February, 2014, 5:45
They did a great job .
Comment icon #5 Posted by Peter B on 15 February, 2014, 10:23
No, not the real colours. They're simply used to distinguish the different geological regions. The surface is basically all water ice, and its colours seem to range between white and grey.


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