Jupiter moon Callisto. Images & info.

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Like the Mercury MESSENGER thingy I have been working (decided to give Mercury a break for the moment, but will return there) I am finding rarely seen imagery on Planetary Image Atlas & contrast enhance them.

I has chosen Callisto because.

1) Callisto is the the solar system's third largest moon at 4,800 KM wide, (Only Jupiter's Ganymede & Saturn's Titan are larger) only 5KM smaller than the planet Mercury, but Mercury is approx 3 times more massive, as Mercury is mostly metal & rock, Callisto is mostly rock & ice. Callisto orbits Jupiter once every 16 days, 16 hours & 19 minutes (approx) & keeps the same face turned towards Jupiter all of the time as out own moon does to Earth. Callisto orbit's Jupiter at a distance of 1.883 million KM, some five times more distant than the moon orbits Earth.

2). Callisto is mostly ignored, out of the solar systems larger moons, Titan & Europa tend to get the attention, yet Callisto has much to tell, namely the impacting & environmental history of the Jovian system. Callisto is the only know object in the solar system over 1,600 KM wide that appears geologically unevolved.

3). Callisto like Mercury is highly photogenic.

4). Callisto unlike Ganymede, Europa & Io of the four Galilean moons of Jupiter appear undifferentiated, i.e the internal structure appears homogenous, i.e there are no distinct layers, no core, mantle & crust. The mean global density of Callisto is 1.86 G CM[super]3[/super]. Callisto has a crust of brittle , hardened ice for sure, there is wild hyperbolic, specualtion, though no real proof in my opinion yet of a subsurface ocean.

Callisto two views from KBO 134340 Pluto bound New Horizons.

Various from Voyager & mostly Galileo.

Andrew Brown.
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