Bonn 2020 – wissenschaftliches Programm

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EP: Fachverband Extraterrestrische Physik

EP 9: Planets and small Objects II

EP 9.2: Vortrag

Donnerstag, 2. April 2020, 14:30–14:45, H-HS VIII

Dielectric properties of surface ice on Enceladus' southpole — •Pia Friend, Alex Kyriacou, and Klaus Helbing — Bergische Universität Wuppertal

Saturn's icy moon Enceladus is with its roughly 500 km diameter a differentiated, geological active body that harbours a liquid ocean between its rocky core and icy mantle. This ocean is among the most promising places to host extraterrestrial life in our solar system. At Enceladus' south pole terrain, active geysers form a passage from the ocean to the surface; erupting ice, dust and gas particles. Most of those particles escape the moon's gravity, but some portion falls back to the surface. Considering the current output, and depending on the timescale the geysers are active at the same location, the snow layer could have a thickness of some km already. A first model of the density profile of the snow layer as a function of the ice/vacuum ratio will be provided at the conference. From this, it is possible to define the dielectric properties of the snow layer. A well-defined dielectric profile in turn could help to radar navigate a melting probe through the ice on Enceladus during a possible future space mission.

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