The Hubble space telescope took images of the 3 biggest moons while they were in transit across its sunward face. The sharp images published by NASA were captured on Jan 24th. These pictures display the three largest moons of Jupiter called the Europa, Callisto & Io, traveling together in a convoy across Jupiter.
All three of these moons are acknowledged as Galilean moons as they were discovered by Galileo in the 17th century. It is usual to see at least one of these moons to be rotating around Jupiter since their orbit ranges from 2-17 days. Although, this meet cute of the three moons is an uncommon incident, taking place maybe one or two times in 10 years, as confirmed by NASA officials.
Hubble has been important for science, but we felt that there are images that have aesthetic value above and beyond their scientific value, says Zolt Levay, who works with the Space Telescope Science Institute. The 4th Galilean moon Ganymede was not part of Hubble s view hence held no significance to the celestial night.
Amongst all the moons, Europa caught the most attention and is believed to possess elements which have the probability of making it a hospitable multi-cellular life. Getting a closer look at it is not that far away. NASA s latest $18.5 billion budget recently included funds allocated for Planetary Science in inclusive of a mission to Europa, Jupiter s moon. Europa is considered to possess an interior ocean maybe 10 times larger than ones of Earth and has twice or thrice as much liquid water as Earth.