Ice on the Move: From Io to Pluto


Wednesday, September 12 2012 - 12:00 pm, PDT
John Spencer
Southwest Research Institute

It's perhaps no surprise that the cold worlds of the outer solar system often display surfaces covered in ice, though the ice composition is sometimes unexpected, including sulfur dioxide or nitrogen ice, for instance, in addition to water ice.  The motion of these ices as they sublime and condense can have profound effects on these worlds and their atmospheres.  The variable patchy atmosphere of Io, the extreme albedo contrasts seen on small scales on Callisto and on large scales on Iapetus, and seasonal changes in the atmospheres of Pluto and Triton, are all controlled by the movement of surface ices. 

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