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Cosmos

Europe’s moon aliens can feed on radioactivity

Europe's moon aliens can feed on radioactivity 31

Scientists assume that Europe, a satellite of the planet Jupiter, is home to an environment conducive to life. In a huge ocean of salt water bacteria that feed on radioactivity could exist, say researchers from the Brazilian synchrotron light laboratory and the University of Sao Paulo.

The satellite of the planet Jupiter, Europe is a good candidate for the search for extraterrestrial life close to the Earth.

This Jupiter’s moon hides under its thick crust of ice, a huge ocean of salt water. In it, life could develop. Scientists have concluded that there are most likely radioactive elements in Europe that can serve as an energy source for microorganisms similar to those found on Earth called Desulforudis audaxviators, reports Science Alert.

The anaerobic sulphate-reducing bacteria Desulforudis audaxviator resides in isolated aquatic ecosystems located at a depth of 1.5 to 3 km. It exists independently of other organisms and does not need sunlight. Substances necessary for chemical processes assure the decay of uranium and other radioactive elements.

According to scientists, life on the planet Jupiter’s satellite can exist under three conditions: the presence of water, a high temperature and the presence of chemical elements necessary to maintain metabolism. According to recent data, the first two factors are likely to exist. However, researchers do not yet know which substances are dissolved in the waters of Jupiter’s satellite.

Modeling results show that radioactive materials are most likely present on the Europe satellite, as well as on Enceladus. There should be enough of them to support the lives of organizations like the Desulforudis audaxviator.

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