close
SCIENCE

Is there life on the icy moon of Saturn?

Saturn is a planet endowed with a great diversity of moons. One of them is known as Enceladus. This moon, which has a diameter of 500 kilometers, is located about 2 billion kilometers from our current position.

The interesting thing about this moon is that there are several cryovolcanoes and geysers, which are hot springs. Therefore, there is an ocean, located just below the entire ice crust. It is estimated that the bottom of this ocean is no different from that existing on Earth.

But the most curious thing about Enceladus is that it has the necessary virtues to be a home of life. That is what a recent study from the Southwest Research Institute ( SwRI ) of Texas has revealed . These data were obtained from the moons of Saturn through the Cassini space probe.

A probe in charge of exploring the nature of Enceladus

In case you don’t know, the Cassini probe was launched in 1997, as part of a project between the European Space Agency and NASA . The mission of this probe was to study Saturn and the same rings that surround it, in addition to its moons, of course.

Over the past twenty years, Cassini had the mission of collecting samples of the surface of the moon Enceladus. That allowed him to travel around several more moons and approach hydrothermal chimneys. This is how it was identified that there is an ocean, whose surface layer is kilometers thick.

The study carried out by SwRI states that given the conditions, Encend it is one of Saturn’s moons that best offers living conditions. On the surface of the moon, the presence of elements such as carbon and hydrogen is recorded, as indicated by Christopher Glein .

The microbes would be in front of a “banquet”

In addition, taking into account the levels of carbon dioxide and hydrogen, its high concentration would make it clear that living microbes could find there a true chemical “banquet” to proliferate . The level of Ph is also quite similar to that of the Earth.

Another element that has been recognized and also in large proportions is ammonium. Keep in mind that ammonia is considered one of the most potent fuels for the evolution of life.

So the studies affirm that these life molecules present ideal conditions for the germination of living beings. The conditions of organic molecules more complex in the interior of the moon are Encélado but very similar to those offered by the planet Earth.

All this makes it clear that this famous moon of Saturn, becomes a perfect territory for the progress of life. However, other scientists in the same project have preferred to be reserved and only venture to say that “it is possible” to be so.

Tags :