Brown University News Bureau

The Brown University News Bureau

Distributed March 2, 1998
Contact: Scott Turner

Photo captions for slides and prints of Europa surface

Images in the press packet are provided by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif., and are keyed to the serial numbers below. JPL manages the Galileo mission for NASA's Office of Space Science, Washington, D.C. JPL is an operating division of California Institute of Technology (Caltech). These and other images and data received from Galileo are posted on the World Wide Web, on the Galileo mission home page at http://www.jpl.nasa.gov/galileo. Background information and educational context for the images can be found at http://www.jpl.nasa.gov/galileo/sepo.


P49637

Produced by: Deutsches Zentrum für Luft-und Raumfahrt (German Aerospace Center)

TITLE: Pwyll Impact Crater: Perspective View of Topographic Model

This computer generated perspective view of the Pwyll impact crater on Jupiter's moon Europa was created using images taken by the Solid State Imaging system on NASA/JPL's Galileo spacecraft during its sixth and twelfth orbits of Jupiter. Images of the crater taken from different angles on the different orbits have been combined to generate a model of the topography of Pwyll and its surroundings. This simulated view is from the southwest at a 45 degree angle, with 4 times vertical exaggeration. The colors represent different elevation levels, with blue being the lowest elevation, and red being the highest. Pwyll, about 26 kilometers (16 miles) across, is unusual among craters in the solar system, because its floor is at about the same elevation as the surrounding terrain. Moreover, its central peak, standing approximately 600 meters (almost 2,000 feet) above the floor, is much higher than its rim. This may indicate that the crater has been modified shortly after its formation by the flow of underlying warm ice.

P49634

Produced by: Brown University (Providence, RI)

TITLE: Very high resolution image of Icy Cliffs on Europa and similar scales on Earth

The top image is a very high resolution view of the Conamara Chaos region on Jupiter's moon Europa, showing an area where icy plates have been broken apart and moved around laterally. The top of this image is dominated by corrugated plateaus ending in icy cliffs over a hundred meters (a few hundred feet) high. Debris is piled at the base of the cliffs. The bottom image is an aerial photograph of downtown Providence, Rhode Island at the same scale. The bright white circular feature in the top center of the Providence image is an indoor hockey rink, and one can find many craters in the Europa image about the same size. Blocks of debris which have fallen from the cliffs on the Europa image are about the same size as houses seen in the Providence image, and the largest blocks are almost as large as the Rhode Island state capitol building (large white building in upper left of Providence image). A fracture that runs horizontally across the center of the Europa image is about the same width as the freeway which runs along the bottom of the Providence image.

North is to the top right of the Europa image, and the sun illuminates the surface from the east. The Europa image is centered at approximately 9 degrees north latitude and 274 degrees west longitude. The images each cover an area approximately 1.7 kilometers by 4 kilometers (1 mile by 2.5 miles). The resolution is 9 meters (30 feet) per picture element. The Europa image was taken on December 16, 1997, at a range of 900 kilometers (540 miles) by the solid state imaging system on NASA's Galileo spacecraft.

P49632

Produced by: Jet Propulsion Laboratory

TITLE: Very high resolution image of Icy Cliffs on Europa

A very high resolution view of the Conamara Chaos region on Jupiter's moon Europa, showing an area where icy plates have been broken apart and moved around laterally. The top of this image is dominated by corrugated plateaus ending in icy cliffs over a hundred meters (a few hundred feet) high. Debris, piled at the base of the cliffs, can be resolved down to blocks the size of a house. A fracture that runs horizontally across the center of the Europa image is about the width of a freeway.

North is to the top right of the image, and the sun illuminates the surface from the east. The image is centered at approximately 9 degrees north latitude and 274 degrees west longitude and covers an area approximately 1.7 kilometers by 4 kilometers (1 mile by 2.5 miles). The resolution is 9 meters (30 feet) per picture element. The image was taken on December 16, 1997, at a range of 900 kilometers (540 miles) by the solid state imaging system on NASA's Galileo spacecraft.

P49627

Produced by: Jet Propulsion Laboratory

TITLE: Chaotic Terrain on Europa in very high resolution

View of the Conamara Chaos region on Jupiter's moon Europa showing an area where the icy surface has been broken into many separate plates, which have moved laterally and rotated. These plates are surrounded by a topographically lower matrix. This matrix material may have been emplaced as water, slush, or warm flowing ice, which rose up from below the surface. One of the plates is seen as a flat, lineated area in the upper portion of the image. Below this plate, a tall twin-peaked mountain of ice rises from the matrix to a height of over 250 meters (800 feet). The matrix in this area appears to consist of a jumble of many different sized chunks of ice. Though the matrix may have consisted of a loose jumble of ice blocks while it was forming, the large fracture running vertically along the left side of the image shows that the matrix later became a hardened crust, and is frozen today. The Brooklyn Bridge in New York City would be just large enough to span this fracture.

North is to the top right of the picture, and the sun illuminates the surface from the east. This image, centered at approximately 8 degrees north latitude and 274 degrees west longitude, covers an area approximately 4 kilometers by 7 kilometers (2.5 miles by 4 miles). The resolution is 9 meters (30 feet) per picture element. This image was taken on December 16, 1997, at a range of 900 kilometers (540 miles) by the solid state imaging system on NASA's Galileo spacecraft.

P49630

Produced by: Jet Propulsion Laboratory

TITLE: Highest Resolution Image of Europa

During its twelfth orbit around Jupiter, NASA's Galileo spacecraft made its closest pass of Jupiter's satellite Europa, soaring within a few hundred kilometers of the icy surface. This image was taken near the closest approach point, and is the highest resolution image of Europa that will be obtained by Galileo. The image was taken at a highly oblique angle, providing a vantage point similar to looking out of an airplane window, with the features at the bottom of the image being much closer to the viewer than those at the top of the image. Many bright ridges are seen in the image, with dark material in the low-lying valleys. In the center of the image, the regular ridges and valleys give way to a darker region of jumbled hills, which may be one of the many dark pits observed on the surface of Europa. Smaller dark circular features seen here are probably impact craters.

North is to the right of the picture, and the sun illuminates the surface from that direction. This image, centered at approximately 13 degrees south latitude and 235 degrees west longitude, is approximately 1.8 kilometers (1 mile) wide. The resolution is 6 meters (19 feet) per picture element. This image was taken on December 16, 1997, at a range of 560 kilometers (335 miles) by the solid state imaging system on NASA's Galileo spacecraft.

P49633

Produced by: Jet Propulsion Laboratory

TITLE: Wedge region on Europa

This image shows an area of crustal separation on Europa. Lower resolution images earlier in the Galileo spacecraft's tour revealed that dark wedge-shaped bands in this region are areas at which the icy crust has completely pulled apart, with dark material filling in the void created by this separation. This dark material has welled up from below.

In the lower left of this image, a portion of one of the dark wedge areas is visible, revealing a linear texture along the trend of the wedge. The two orientations visible in this image reflect the fact that we are looking at a dog-leg in the wedge, where it changes orientation slightly. In the right hand part of the image, older, bright background is criss-crossed with ridges. A large bright ridge trends east-west through the upper part of the image, cutting across both the older background plains and the wedge. This ridge is rough in texture, having numerous small terraces and troughs along it, which contain dark material.

North is to the top of the picture and the sun illuminates the surface from the northwest. This image, centered at approximately 16.5 degrees south latitude and 196.5 degrees west longitude, covers an area approximately 10 km square (~6.5 miles square). The resolution of this image is ~26 meters per picture element. This image was taken by the solid state imaging system on NASA's Galileo spacecraft on December 16, 1997, from a distance of 1,250 kilometers (750 miles).

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97-090c

Related documents:

97-090 -- News release describing Europe images
97-090a -- News advisory announcing the press briefing
97-090f -- Fact sheet about the Europa images