NASA's Juno spacecraft detects lava lakes on Jupiter's volcanic moon Io (images)


NASA's Juno mission was originally all about Jupiter, but its extended mission has the spacecraft observing the gas giant planet's moons — and it's making some very interesting discoveries. Its latest discovery? Jupiter's moon IO Covered with “fire-breathing” lava lakes.

using its Jovian Infrared Auroral Mapper (JIRAM) instrument, a project by the Italian Space Agency that was originally used to look down Jupiter's dense cloudsJuno took infrared images of these lakes spread across Io's surface, showing hot rings of lava surrounding a cold crust. In the images, the rings are bright white and have temperatures between 450 and 1,350 degrees Fahrenheit (232 and 732 degrees Celsius). The rest of the lake is much colder, with a temperature of minus 45 degrees Fahrenheit (minus 43 degrees Celsius).


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