back to article Decades-old data reveals shows Jupiter’s moon sprayed alien juice over Galileo probe

Space scientists have just figured out that an unusual anomaly from over 20 years ago was the equivalent of a space probe being squirted in the face. Back in 1997 the Galileo Jupiter probe skimmed the watery moon of Europa and now it appears it got a faceful from a water plume 1,000km (621 miles) wide. Flying at 6km (3.7 …

  1. ecofeco Silver badge


    Oh come on. Who wasn't thinking this?!

    1. The Oncoming Scorn Silver badge

      Re: Splooge!

      Reminds me of a chap nicknamed "Pebbledash" as his ladyfriend took great displeasure at his apparent lack of control & scraped the object of her distaste against the wall that he was currently stood by.

    2. James O'Shea Silver badge

      Re: Splooge!

      I thought of Flesh Gordon.

    3. handleoclast

      Re: Splooge!

      Oh come on. Who wasn't thinking this?!


      I was thinking of bukkake. And then pearl necklaces. Splooge was so far down the list I didn't think of it until you mentioned it.

      Icon chosen as the closest substitute to a bukkake icon.

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Splooge!

      "Oh come on. Who wasn't thinking this?!"

      I only got as far as thinking that it might be the first time that windscreen (windshield) wipers were necessary on a space probe.

  2. DJO Silver badge

    For the benefit of I ain't Spartacus

    Speed: 650 Double Deckers/Second (0.2% of the maximum velocity of a sheep in a vacuum.)

    Altitude: 9100 Brontosauruses

    Converting from Metric & Imperial units gave slightly different results so I used a round number somewhere between both values.

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Why do they think it would only be microbial scale?

    They think the ocean might be 20-30 miles deep, so it would have as much water as the Earth's oceans. Before life crawled up onto land, it had become complex - and BIG in some cases. Even if you look at the life that has evolved around the vents at depth where there's no sunlight, there is complex life there. Maybe not blue whale sized, but we certainly don't need a microscope to see it.

    I see no reason Europa should stop its evolution at single cell.

    1. Denarius Silver badge

      Re: Why do they think it would only be microbial scale?

      The ice at the bottom might be a problem. The ten plus miles of it. Or, water is destructive to complex organic molecules, especially if it has sulphates in it. Did I mention the steady leakage of hydrogen peroxide from the irradiated ice ? Lets not go into the energy available to build large non-bacterial organisms. So probably only a weak sulphurous acid solution with traces of salts lurking under the ice. However just doing the chemistry investigations would be great research.

      1. Chris G

        Re: Why do they think it would only be microbial scale?

        @ Denarius.

        That shouldn't be too much of a problem for anything like this;

  4. 89724105618719278590214I9405670349743096734346773478647852349863592355648544996313855148583659264921

    "not possible" + "1997 Pentium Days"

    ARE YOU KIDDING ME?!??!?! It was missed and not limited by the 1997 Pentium which (without the Pentium of Borg bug [I AM PENTIUM OF BORG, DIVISION IS IMPOSSIBLE, YOU WILL BE APPROXIMATED]) is more than capable of calculating pretty much anything, given a month or multiple.

    1. Paul Kinsler

      Re: ARE YOU KIDDING ME?!??!?!

      I suspect the required number of cpu-months may have been rather larger than you think...

      1. 89724105618719278590214I9405670349743096734346773478647852349863592355648544996313855148583659264921

        Re: ARE YOU KIDDING ME?!??!?!

        "Not practical" would have been more accurate.

  5. spold Silver badge

    Could have been worse might have been Uranus.

    1. Grikath

      Uranus has been proven to have farted all over the solar system already...

  6. John Smith 19 Gold badge
    Thumb Up

    That is truly a formidable ejaculation

    200Km up and flying through it.

    Europa gets more interesting with every new observation being crunched through.

    Once again proving that properly archiving all that historic data (which is not that big a chunk of storage in the whole scheme of things) is a pretty worthwhile investment.

  7. Roland6 Silver badge

    "Decades old data"

    So is it safe to assume that NASA has learnt the lessons about the long-term storage of data: both retaining the metadata about just what is in the dataset and keeping the data in an accessible format on an accessible device.

    1. Zog_but_not_the_first

      Re: "Decades old data"

      {rushes to filing cabinet}

      "I'll just get the Saturn Five plans..."

      "Oh, wait..."

      1. cray74

        Re: "Decades old data"

        "I'll just get the Saturn Five plans..."

        "Oh, wait..."

        ...You don't have a microfilm reader? ;) Contrary to John Lewis's claim in "Mining the Sky" that the blueprints are gone, NASA preserved the blueprints for the Saturn V at the Marshall Space Center in microfiche format. Documents for ground support equipment are also preserved.

    2. Tom Paine

      Re: "Decades old data"

      Yes. . All data from all spacecraft is there as soon as the respective PIs have had their first crack at writing papers based on it (6-12 months typically IIRC)

  8. TrumpSlurp the Troll
    Paris Hilton

    Reaction Mass?

    Isn't one of the issues of long distance space travel gaining access to substantial amounts of reaction mass in a convenient form in a convenient gravity well?

    1. deive
      Thumb Up

      Re: Reaction Mass?

      You mean, let's scoop up this ejaculate and use it for our own nefarious purposes? Good plan, along with asteroid mining!

      1. Sgt_Oddball Silver badge

        Re: Reaction Mass?

        Made of some sort of lightweight flexible material.. maybe stretchable and contained in a hermetically sealed enclosure of some sort? Silicone for the capture device and foil for its wrapping?

        Seems a sensible way to collected ejected matter to me.....

        I'll get my coat, no need to push...

    2. DropBear

      Re: Reaction Mass?

      I always find it entertaining whenever mass simply gaining a particular altitude from a planetary surface gets confused with mass at the same altitude also possessing orbital velocity. The difference is more than superficial, for purposes of harvesting said mass for later use (not to mention colliding with). If one could merely impart acceleration upon it as a way of "pushing off it" so to speak - well, good luck with that, but you can only do that as long as you are flying through said plume...

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    "My God, it's full of starfish!"

    How is it that I am the first to post that? You other Regenistas are slipping...

  10. ravenviz Silver badge

    life, albeit on a microbial scale

    Aw, I wanted it to be those creatures on the front of progressive rock album covers.

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