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New estimates for Io eruption temperatures: Implications for the interior

January 1, 2007

The initial interpretation of Galileo data from Jupiter's moon, Io, suggested eruption temperatures ≥1600°C. Tidal heating models have difficulties explaining Io's prodigious heat flow if the mantle is >1300°C, although we suggest that temperatures up to ~1450°C may be possible. In general, Io eruption temperatures have been overestimated because the incorrect thermal model has been applied. Much of the thermal emission from high-temperature hot spots comes from lava fountains but lava flow models were utilized. We apply a new lava fountain model to the highest reported eruption temperature, the SSI observation of the 1997 eruption at Pillan. This resets the lower temperature limit for the eruption from ~1600 to ~1340°C . Additionally, viscous heating of the magma may have increased eruption temperature by ~50-100°C as a result of the strong compressive stresses in the ionian lithosphere. While further work is needed, it appears that the discrepancy between observations and interior models is largely resolved.

Publication Year 2007
Title New estimates for Io eruption temperatures: Implications for the interior
DOI 10.1016/j.icarus.2007.07.008
Authors Laszlo P. Keszthelyi, Windy L. Jaeger, Moses P. Milazzo, Jani Radebaugh, Ashley G. Davies, Karl L. Mitchell
Publication Type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Series Title Icarus
Index ID 70030148
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse
USGS Organization Astrogeology Science Center