Exploring Ocean Worlds: The search for life and interesting chemistry in our cosmic backyard

This seminar is part of the EAI on-line seminars

By Morgan L. Cable, Planetary Instrument for X-Ray Lithochemistry (PIXL), NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, USA

23 January 2024, 16:00 CET

Our solar system is home to a diverse array of ocean worlds: bodies that contain oceans and seas of liquid, usually water, either on their surfaces or underneath icy crusts. These worlds are prime targets of exploration as they may contain all three ingredients for life as we know it – water, chemistry, and energy. Could life exist in the subsurface oceans of Enceladus or Europa? Could even stranger life have emerged in the liquid methane lakes of Titan? Dr. Cable will cover our current state of knowledge of these ocean worlds, and discuss some current missions and future mission concepts to explore their plumes, surfaces, and ocean depths.