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Europa(yo͝orō`pə), in astronomy, one of the 39 known moons, or natural satellites, of JupiterJupiter
, in astronomy, 5th planet from the sun and largest planet of the solar system. Astronomical and Physical Characteristics
Jupiter's orbit lies beyond the asteroid belt at a mean distance of 483.6 million mi (778.
..... Click the link for more information. . Magnetic-field data collected by the space probe Galileo in 2002 strongly indicated a liquid-water ocean—similar to oceans found on Earth and possibly capable of supporting simple life forms—beneath Europa's frozen surface, and the Hubble space telescope has found evidence of possible plumes of water being ejected from Europa into space.
Europa(yo͝orō`pə), in Greek mythology, daughter of AgenorAgenor
, in Greek mythology. 1 King of Tyre, father of Cadmus and Europa. When Europa disappeared, Agenor sent Cadmus and his other sons in search of her. 2 Trojan hero, son of Antenor.
..... Click the link for more information. and Telephassa. Zeus, enamored of her, appeared as a white bull, enticed her to climb on his back, and swam off with her to Crete. There she bore him MinosMinos
, in Greek mythology, king of Crete, son of Zeus and Europa. He was the husband of Pasiphaë, who bore him Androgeus, Glaucus, Ariadne, and Phaedra. Because Minos failed to sacrifice a beautiful white bull to Poseidon, the god caused Pasiphaë to conceive a lustful
..... Click the link for more information. , RhadamanthusRhadamanthus
, in Greek mythology, son of Zeus and Europa. Renowned for his justice on earth, the gods made him one of the judges of the dead.
..... Click the link for more information. , and SarpedonSarpedon
, in Greek mythology, son of Zeus and Laodamia, who was the daughter of Bellerophon. In the Iliad, as an ally of the Trojans, Sarpedon courageously led the Lycians against the Greeks in the Trojan War.
..... Click the link for more information. . She married the king of Crete, who adopted her sons. After her death she was worshiped as a goddess in the festival of the Hellotia.
Europa(yoo-roh -pă) The smallest of the four Galilean satellites of Jupiter and the only one inferior in size and mass to the Moon. It has a diameter of 3138 km and its density is 2.97 g cm–3. Its albedo is 0.67. Studied by the two Pioneer spacecraft 10 and 11, by Voyager 2, and in particular depth by the Galileo spacecraft, Europa has been found to be a smooth-surfaced world with no mountains and very few craters – none more than about 20 km in diameter. Its relatively young icy crust (at least 100 km thick) overlies what is thought to be a metallic core and is crisscrossed by a series of streaks and cracks. Most of the cracks appear to be filled with dark-colored material, some with a light-colored substance. The gravitational influence on Europa not only of Jupiter but also of the satellites Io and Ganymede serve to squeeze the satellite, resulting in tidal flexing, which is believed to heat Europa's interior. Tidal flexing may have melted some of the ice crust to form a substantial ocean of liquid water between it and the core. Water from this ocean may seep through cracks produced in the crust and may refreeze at the surface, thereby renewing it or forming icy ridges. It has been suggested that this ocean, if it exists, may provide a possible suitable environment for extraterrestrial microorganisms. The Hubble Space Telescope has revealed that Europa has a vanishingly thin oxygen atmosphere, due not to biological action but to the interaction between charged particles from the Sun and water molecules in the satellite's icy crust. The charged particles break up some of the water molecules, liberating hydrogen, which dissipates into space, and oxygen. See also Jupiter's satellites; Table 2, backmatter.
in ancient Greek mythology, the daughter of the Phoenician King Agenor; she was abducted and carried off to the island of Crete by Zeus, who had turned himself into a bull. The cult of Europa existed in Phoenicia and on Crete. The abduction of Europa is a frequent subject in the pictorial and plastic arts (Titian, Claude Lorraine, Guido Reni, and V. A. Serov).