Evidence for non-synchronous rotation of Europa

  title={Evidence for non-synchronous rotation of Europa},
  author={P. Geissler and R. Greenberg and G. Hoppa and P. Helfenstein and A. McEwen and R. Pappalardo and R. Tufts and M. Ockert-Bell and R. Sullivan and R. Greeley and M. J. S. Belton and T. Denk and B. Clark and J. Burns and J. Veverka and the Galileo Imaging Team},
  • P. Geissler, R. Greenberg, +13 authors the Galileo Imaging Team
  • Published 1998
  • Physics
  • Nature
  • Non-synchronous rotation of Europa was predicted on theoretical grounds, by considering the orbitally averaged torque exerted by Jupiter on the satellite's tidal bulges. If Europa's orbit were circular, or the satellite were comprised of a frictionless fluid without tidal dissipation, this torque would average to zero. However, Europa has a small forced eccentricity e ≈ 0.01 (ref. 2), generated by its dynamical interaction with Io and Ganymede, which should cause the equilibrium spin rate of… CONTINUE READING
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