In recent years, discovery of exoplanets and moons has gained significant speed and it’s probable that someday in future, we will be able to find another planet which is suitable for sustaining life. Space exploration is already a complicated matter and sending missions to all these potential planets is considerably difficult. However, NASA and ESA have decided to come together to explore other worlds for potential lives.
Earlier on Sunday, the joint mission was unveiled at the annual meeting of the European Geosciences Union. Talking about the mission, Michel Blanc said to New Scientist, “The whole idea is that if we think exploring Europa for life is important, it should be an international adventure. The ultimate goal is to get to the surface and look for bio-signatures of life.”
Europa became the current best place to support life in our solar system after it was discovered that the moon actually have a vast ocean beneath its icy crust. According to researchers, the moon has twice as much water as our planets which mean there are even more reasons to explore the moon.
As of now, the joint mission is set to launch by mid 2020s and would run for about six and a half years. It would take more than five years to reach the moon and after reaching the Europa’s orbit, a lander would take different samples to find traces of life. On the other hand, the orbiter craft would spend approximately three months to study Europa’s basic composition.
If the mission become successful, then it would clearly open up a new era where collective effort to search for alien life would become commonplace which might lead to greater discovery. We will have to wait several years to see the results of the exploration.
Featured Image: NASA