News / Science & Technology

Massive Volcano Erupts on Jupiter's Moon, Io

 In this computer-enhanced picture from Voyager 1 taken in 1979, blue plume on the horizon consists of material hurled upward from volcano to more than 150 kilometers (about 90 miles) above Io's blotchy red-orange landscape.
In this computer-enhanced picture from Voyager 1 taken in 1979, blue plume on the horizon consists of material hurled upward from volcano to more than 150 kilometers (about 90 miles) above Io's blotchy red-orange landscape.

Related Articles

Video Sun on Verge of Massive Flip

Switches in sun's magnetic field happen about once every 11 years, solar physicists say

Video NASA Maps Global Spread of Chelyabinsk Meteor Plume

Withing four days, the plume had snaked its way entirely around the Northern Hemisphere and back to Chelyabinsk

Evidence Found of Water Deep Below Lunar Surface

The findings represent the first detection of water from lunar orbit
TEXT SIZE - +
Jupiter’s moon Io is the most volcanic body in the solar system, and astronomers recently witnessed an eruption bigger than any ever recorded on Earth.

Dr. Imke de Pater, professor of astronomy and planetary science at the University of California in Berkeley spotted the eruption on August 15, using the Keck II telescope on Mauna Kea in Hawaii.

The eruption took place in the Rarog Patera area of Io, which is 628,300,000 kilometers away from Earth. The area is not known to be particularly active with volcanoes, but is believed to have fountains of lava streaming from fissures on Io’s surface. The region is named after the Czech fire god.

The eruption was “way bigger than anything in recorded history on Earth,” de Pater said, adding that the Rarog Patera eruption was likely 100 to 500 times larger than any of the bigger eruptions here on Earth in recent decades.

According to Ashley Davies of NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California, the Io eruption emitted about 17,000 times more energy than typically produced by Hawaii’s Kilauea, Earth’s most active volcano.

De Pater said the eruption offers a chance to better understand Io’s volcanic activity.

“There are many things we hope to learn from eruptions like these,” she said. “At this point, we don’t know how long they last -- hours, days, weeks, months.”

Scientists believe the amount of volcanic activity on Io is the result of a gravitational tug of war between Jupiter and some of the massive planet’s other moons.

Data and imagery of the eruption will be released in a forthcoming paper, de Pater said.

You May Like

Multimedia Relatives of South Korean Ferry Victims Fire at Authorities

46 people are confirmed dead, but some 250 remain trapped inside sunken ferry More

War Legacy Haunts Vietnam, US Relations

$84 million project aims to clean up soil contaminated by Agent Orange More

Wikipedia Proves Useful for Tracking Flu

Technique gave better results than Center for Disease Control (CDC) and Google’s Flu Trends More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Ukraine, Russia, United in Faith, Divided in Politicsi
X
Michael Eckels
April 19, 2014
There is a strong historical religious connection between Russia and Ukraine. But what role is religion playing in the current conflict? In the run-up to Easter, Michael Eckels in Moscow reports for VOA.
Video

Video Ukraine, Russia, United in Faith, Divided in Politics

There is a strong historical religious connection between Russia and Ukraine. But what role is religion playing in the current conflict? In the run-up to Easter, Michael Eckels in Moscow reports for VOA.
Video

Video Face of American Farmer is Changing

The average American farmer is now 58 years old, and farmers 65 and older are the fastest growing segment of the population. It’s a troubling trend signaling big changes ahead for American agriculture as aging farmers retire. Reporter Mike Osborne says a new report from the U.S. Census Bureau is suggesting what some of those changes might look like... and why they might not be so troubling.
Video

Video Donetsk Governor: Ukraine Military Assault 'Delicate But Necessary'

Around a dozen state buildings in eastern Ukraine remain in the hands of pro-Russian protesters who are demanding a referendum on self-rule. The governor of the whole Donetsk region is among those forced out by the protesters. He spoke to VOA's Henry Ridgwell from his temporary new office in Donetsk city.
Video

Video Drones May Soon Send Data From High Seas

Drones are usually associated with unmanned flying vehicles, but autonomous watercraft are also becoming useful tools for jobs ranging from scientific exploration to law enforcement to searching for a missing airliner in the Indian Ocean. VOA’s George Putic reports on sea-faring drones.
Video

Video New Earth-Size Planet Found

Not too big, not too small. Not too hot, not too cold. A newly discovered planet looks just right for life as we know it, according to an international group of astronomers. VOA’s Steve Baragona has more.
Video

Video Copts in Diaspora Worry About Future in Egypt

Around 10 percent of Egypt’s population belong to the Coptic faith, making them the largest Christian minority in the Middle East. But they have become targets of violence since the revolution three years ago. With elections scheduled for May and the struggle between the Egyptian military and Islamists continuing, many Copts abroad are deeply worried about the future of their ancient church. VOA religion correspondent Jerome Socolovsky visited a Coptic church outside Washington DC.
Video

Video Critics Say Venezuelan Protests Test Limits of Military's Support

During the two months of deadly anti-government protests that have rocked the oil-rich nation of Venezuela, President Nicolas Maduro has accused the opposition of trying to initiate a coup. Though a small number of military officers have been arrested for allegedly plotting against the government, VOA’s Brian Padden reports the leadership of the armed forces continues to support the president, at least for now.
Video

Video More Millenials Unplug to Embrace Board Games

A big new trend in the U.S. toy industry has more consumers switching off their high-tech gadgets to play with classic toys, like board games. This is especially true among the so-called millenial generation - those born in the 1980's and 90's. Elizabeth Lee has more from an unusual café in Los Angeles, where the new trend is popular and business is booming.
Video

Video Google Buys Drone Company

In its latest purchase of high-tech companies, Google has acquired a manufacturer of solar-powered drones that can stay in the air almost indefinitely, relaying broadband Internet connection to remote areas. It is seen as yet another step in the U.S. based Web giant’s bid to bring Internet to the whole world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
AppleAndroid