NASA Finds Potentially Habitable Ocean Environment on Saturn's Moon

Enceladus

Then we developed the technology to visit thermal vents deep on the ocean floor that support life with chemical energy completely removed from the sun.

And as NASA so eloquently breaks down, "Life as we know it requires three primary ingredients: liquid water; a source of energy for metabolism; and the right chemical ingredients, primarily carbon, hydrogen, nitrogen, oxygen, phosphorus and sulfur".

From these observations scientists were able to find that almost 98 percent of the gas in the plume is water, about 1 percent is hydrogen and the remaining is a mixture of other molecules including carbon dioxide, methane and ammonia.

"Based on the data, NASA believes that it's possible for simple life such as bacteria to live on the seafloor of Enceladus, adding that they will be excited with any discovery of life".

"Now, Enceladus is high on the list in the solar system for showing habitable conditions", said Hunter Waite, one of the study s leading researchers.

This is the closest scientists have come to identifying a place having the ingredients for life, said Thomas Zurbuchen, the associate administrator of the NASA Science Mission Directorate.

"We now know Enceladus has nearly all the ingredients that you need to support life as you know it on Earth", said Linda Spilker, a Cassini project scientist, during a briefing that announced the new findings. The researchers reported that the hydrogen, along with carbon dioxide that was also found, could mean that undersea microorganisms are producing methane.

Through the study what surfaced up is that the moon has hydrogen for ecosystems.

These composite images show a suspected plume of material erupting two years apart from the same location on Jupiter's icy moon Europa. A plume of water had already been observed in the same spot, which is how scientists knew to be watching for it.

"The next time we go back. you're going to take something that not only picks up on the habitability story, but it starts looking for evidence for life".

NASA's hyped-up Thursday afternoon, April 13 announcement revealed that one of Saturn's moons, Enceladus, has "all the ingredients needed to support life".

Meanwhile, Cassini's longstanding mission is soon coming to an end. A possible plume of material has also been spotted erupting from the surface of Europa a year ago, in the same place that one was spotted by Hubble in 2014.

In other words, Enceladus possesses potential evidence of microbial life below its surface.

Scientists have detected a similar plume on Europa, Jupiter's moon.

NASA is planning for a new mission known as the Europa Clipper mission, which is now slated for the early 2020s.

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