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NASA Space Science

Jupiter's Moon Io Has a Volcanic Sub-Surface 48

gabbo529 writes "NASA scientists have discovered new information on one of Jupiter's moons, indicating it has a molten magma sub-surface (abstract). This discovery, made using data analysis from NASA's Galileo spacecraft, reveals why that particular moon is the most volcanic object known in the solar system. The moon, which is named Io, produces about 100 times more lava each year than all the volcanoes on Earth combined. The global magma ocean about 30 to 50 kilometers (20 to 30 miles) beneath Io's surface explains the moon's activity." Science has a nice graphic, too.
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Jupiter's Moon Io Has a Volcanic Sub-Surface

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  • by Meshach ( 578918 ) on Thursday May 12, 2011 @05:44PM (#36112596)

    It's been widely known for a long time that Io is volcanically active. I remember reading about it in a kids' astronomy book in the 1970's.

    People have known for a long time that Io has volcanic activity but no one new before now that Io has a sub-surface made entirely of magma.

    The main theory of how the planet Earth evolved was that the land was formed from a magma sub-surface that cooled and gave us what we have today. Ergo Io may be a window into the Earth's development.

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