News FocusFALL MEETING OF THE AMERICAN GEOPHYSICAL UNION, 14–18 DECEMBER 2009, SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA

Magnetics Point to Magma 'Ocean' at Io

See allHide authors and affiliations

Science  22 Jan 2010:
Vol. 327, Issue 5964, pp. 408-409
DOI: 10.1126/science.327.5964.408-b

You are currently viewing the summary.

View Full Text

Log in to view the full text

Log in through your institution

Log in through your institution

Summary

Three of Jupiter's large moons have global salty oceans under kilometers of ice, but the fourth, Io, is just a ball of rock. Nevertheless, space physicists presented evidence at the fall meeting of the American Geophysical Union for a global ocean tens of kilometers beneath the volcano-pocked surface of Io. This one, however, would be mostly molten rock, harkening back to the solar system's very earliest days when most big, rocky bodies sported a magma ocean.