Water is the most necessary ingredient for human life, and fortunately, our planet has plenty of it! But in a solar system so large, it seems almost impossible that we would be the only location with water. The Kuiper Belt, which contains Pluto and more, is over 7.5 billion kilometers away, and that’s not even the end of the social system. But where, exactly, is extra-terrestrial water located? We break it down below.
The two most certain locations of water outside of our planet are both moons.
Europa, which orbits around Jupiter, and Enceladus of Saturn have both been all but confirmed to have water. Europa has an ice crust, but seems to show clear signs of water below. The tidal effects from Jupiter’s gravitational pull, along with possible hydrothermal vents, have many thinking it could even be warm water!
Enceladus is much smaller than Europa, but it makes up for its size with an even greater chance at having a warm ocean. The warm oceans and hourly geyser eruptions show many similarities to the atmosphere of life-bearing Earth. Ganymede, the largest of Jupiter’s moons, is also expected to have a warm ocean. However, no geysers and a lack of surface activity leave questions regarding whether the water is frozen or not.
Mars and Dione (another moon of Saturn) probably contained water in the past, but researchers are less sure about the situation now. In a surprising development, it’s now thought Pluto could have a potential ocean, but this is not yet confirmed. Mercury, Neptune, Uranus, and the Earth’s moon were all once considered waterless, but recent developments show a chance of small amounts found in each.
Ice is much more commonly found across our solar system, with many moons around Saturn, Neptune, and Uranus appearing to be made mostly of frozen water. The Kuiper Belt is also known for containing hundred of icy objects, including Pluto and other dwarf planet candidates.
Vapors can be found quite often throughout the solar system, often in packs that have never been named! Planets like Venus, Jupiter, and Saturn have also shown signs of water vapor.
The Water Way – Earth’s Favorite Water Distributor
While it’s certainly interesting to learn about the different forms of water throughout the solar system, our focus remains on keeping the good people of Earth hydrated. We deliver high-quality water to our clients, whether they’re at business or at home! Contact us today for more information.