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Project Report: Undergraduate Student Research Program (USRP)To better understand geochemical processes occurring on Europa's seafloor, we investigated the effects of varying Fe?content in the seafloor rock and varying temperature. Iron is important in such geochemical processes as the production of methane through serpentinization (e.g. Allen and Seyfried, 2003) and can be a nutrient for microbes (Russell and Hall, 2006; Park and Kim, 2001). It can also offer clues as to the state of differentiation of Europa's core/mantle. If Europa is fully differentiated and contains an iron core, we would expect there to be little iron in the mantle and ocean floor whereas a homogeneous Europa would have iron evenly dispersed throughout the ocean floor. Furthermore, the composition of the ocean is a result of water?rock interactions at the seafloor. This project investigated the effects of temperature on geochemical processes, comparing high temperature (> 250oC) hydrothermal vents (Kelley et al., 2001) to lower temperature (~20oC) cold seeps (e.g. Orphan et al., 2002).
Document ID
20120015693
Document Type
Other
External Source(s)
Authors
Gavin, Patricia (Jet Propulsion Lab., California Inst. of Tech. Pasadena, CA, United States)
Date Acquired
August 26, 2013
Publication Date
August 1, 2011
Subject Category
Geosciences (General)
Distribution Limits
Public
Copyright
Other
Keywords
Europa
hydrothermal systems