Ice Giant Systems Seminar Series

Ice Giant Systems Seminar Series

The Ice Giant Systems Seminar Series discusses recent developments in topics related to the Ice Giant systems.

Each seminar will host a guest speaker, followed by a lively discussion and community updates & news.

Events are held on the second Tuesday of the month at 11:00 AM ET.

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Upcoming Events

August 13, 2024 11:00 - 12:00 EDT

Astrobiology Applications in the Uranian System

Webinar Zoom Link

Presenter: Dr. Jessica Weber (JPL/Caltech)
Abstract: The 2023-2032 Planetary Science and Astrobiology Decadal Survey prioritized the Uranus Orbiter and Probe (UOP) mission concept as the next priority flagship mission for the decade, which would include measurements of the major moons of Uranus-Miranda, Ariel, Umbriel, Titania, and Oberon. While the Uranian moons differ greatly from the ocean worlds in the Jovian and Saturnian system, the emerging hypothesis is that some of them could at least currently sustain thin, potentially concentrated, oceans. Characterization of these moons would provide critical astrobiological data related to their habitability over time as well as the formation and evolution of ocean worlds more broadly. As the datasets for the outer planets are limited, the astrobiological potential of Miranda, Ariel, Umbriel, Titania, and Oberon currently or in the past is almost totally unconstrained. UOP could provide much needed characterization to these worlds if certain instrumentation and measurements are included, and would be further enhanced through enabling collaboration across scientific disciplines. We aim to draw the attention of the community toward the astrobiological potential of these moons and the critical work that needs to be done before and during a future Uranus Flagship to understand the implications for sustaining oceans and/or habitable environments to the current day.


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