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Unfortunately mystery of life in Europa cannot be solved by this generation and I personally think nor can next. This is because of technology which still needs to take a big step forwards.
Back at Hogwarts, Hermione who was correcting one of Ron’s essay about Io, another of Jupiter’s numerous satellites, when she spotted yet another mistake. She remarked, “And it’s Io that’s got volcanoes.”
She was right again. Some people (I’ll say including Ron) say that Io looks like a pepperoni pizza because satellite is dotted with volcanoes. “Io has more pepperoni-coloured volcanoes than Ron Weasley has freckles,” says Dr. Tony Phillips. At this very moment dozens of these volcanoes are vomiting hottest lava in Solar System. The plumes rise so high into space that volcanic ash freezes before falling back to ground as sulphurous snow. NASA’s spacecrafts have actually flown through these plumes and survived.
Back on Earth and at Hogwarts more precisely where Hermione told Ron over latter’s shoulder, ‘“Jupiter’s biggest moon is Ganymede, not Callisto.”’
Ganymede is largest known satellite discovered in entire Solar System. It is a little wider than Mercury, which is closest planet to Sun in Solar System.
Ron’s mistake is not of those terrible ones though because Callisto is only a little smaller than Ganymede. Like Europa, Callisto may be concealing an ocean.
These four satellites were all discovered by Galileo Galilei in 1960. Galilei was astounded when he observed Jupiter through his primitive telescope as he saw four little ‘stars’ near giant planet. He was even more amazed when he discovered that these ‘stars’ were moving in what seemed to be an orbit around Jupiter from night to night. Astronomers now call these four natural satellites Galilean satellites.
Almost everything that is known about Galilean satellites comes from NASA’s spacecraft, especially two Voyager probes. But Hogwarts is a school of magic whereas Astronomy is simply magic.
K.A.Cassimally is the editor in chief of Astronomy Journal, a small publication of the RCPL Astronomy Club, Mauritius. Check out the new website (to be launched in February 2004): http://www.rcplastronomyclub.zik.mu