We propose a strategy to evaluate the performance of a radar sounder for the subsurface exploration of the Europa icy crust and, in particular, the possibility to detect liquid water at the base of the ice shell. The approach integrates the information coming from experimental measurements of the dielectric properties of icy materials, thermal models related to different crustal scenarios, and numerical simulations of radar signal propagation. The radar response has been evaluated in terms of cumulative attenuation, signal-to-noise ratio (SNR), and reflectivity. Our simulations indicate that a subsurface radar operating at 9 MHz can identify shallow-buried targets and to detect the ice/water interface in various thermal scenarios. Under our assumptions the ice/water interface can be detected almost down to a depth of 15 km under a conductive ice shell, whereas for a convective ice shell, the maximum depth is about 12 km (in the cold downwelling plume). We also discuss the possibility to detect shallow targets associated with interfaces between pure water ice and [Formula: see text] ice mixtures at various salt contents, using the data of laboratory dielectric measurements.
|Titolo:||Radar Signal Penetration and Horizons Detection on Europa Through Numerical Simulations|
|Data di pubblicazione:||2017|
|Citazione:||Di Paolo, F., Lauro, S.E., Castelletti, D., Mitri, G., Bovolo, F., Cosciotti, B., et al. (2017). Radar Signal Penetration and Horizons Detection on Europa Through Numerical Simulations. IEEE JOURNAL OF SELECTED TOPICS IN APPLIED EARTH OBSERVATIONS AND REMOTE SENSING, 1-12.|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||1.1 Articolo in rivista|