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Adam Lampton

Cosmic bacon? 
Perhaps I just have a huge passion for breakfast meat, but the stripes in this new Europa image seem to resemble a popular breakfast food. The colored image we see here is the end result of clear-filter grayscale data collected from NASA’s Galileo spacecraft added to low-resolution color data taken from a separate orbit of Galileo’s. The blue-white areas indicate terrain that is almost pure water ice, while the reddish regions contain water mixed with hydrated salts such as magnesium sulfate or possibly sulfuric acid. The reddish sections are connected with the “bacon” stripe, indicating the possibility that these surface features could have been in contact with a global subsurface oceanic layer during and/or after their formation. The area shown in the image spans approximately 101 x 103 miles (163 x 167 km). The original grayscale data was collected by Galileo on November 6, 1997 while performing the vehicle’s 11th orbit of Jupiter. At the time the data was collected, Galileo was roughly 13,237 miles (21,700 km) from Europa. This data was combined with the lower-res data in 1998 during the 14th orbit of Jupiter and at a distance of 89,000 miles (143,000 km) from Europa. 
Source & Image Credit: NASA

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