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Monday, 13 January 2014

Io

Io

io1
If ever there was a world that should remind you of Hell, it’s Jupiter’s moon Io. Seeming more like something out of Middle Earth than reality, Io has more volcanic activity than any body in our solar system. This geologic activity is caused by the intense tidal forces between Io and Jupiter, which are constantly pulling and stretching the moon.
The eruptions on Io can be enormous, coating over 30 square kilometers (11.6 sq mi) in volcanic material, and they can be seen from space.
Io’s route through Jupiter’s magnetosphere causes it to generate great amounts of electricity that make lightning storms in Jupiter’s upper atmosphere. But don’t think Jupiter gets the worst of this interaction—its intense magnetic belts strip 1,000 kilograms of material off of Io every second. This has the added effect of supercharging Jupiter’s magnetosphere, effectively doubling its size.

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