Possibility of convection for diffusion (Newtonian)Viscosity in the ice shell of Europa?



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Tejero López, Rosa and Ruiz Pérez, Javier (2003) Possibility of convection for diffusion (Newtonian)Viscosity in the ice shell of Europa? Earth, Moon and Planets, 93 . pp. 281-287. ISSN 0167-9295

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Official URL: http://www.springer.com/astronomy/journal/11038


Recent investigations into convection in Europa’s ice shell have been based on non-
Newtonian (stress-dependent) or Newtonian (stress-independent) viscosity for water ice.
However, despite the wide use of Newtonian convection, experimentally observed water ice
flow is non-Newtonian, and analysis of stability against convection of the ice shell using
updated flow laws has been only performed for non-Newtonian rheologies. Here we use the
flow law proposed for diffusion creep to analyze the possibility of the onset of convection for
Newtonian viscosity in relation to the thermal state of Europa. Our findings indicate that for
diffusion creep convection might have started, but that significantly lower heat flows (and
equivalently higher shell thicknesses) and/or grain sizes are required than for superplastic flow,
which is the most probable flow mechanism if the ice shell is convective.

Item Type:Article
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The original publication is available at www.springerlink.com

Uncontrolled Keywords:Convection, Europa, Heat flow, Rheology, Thermal evolution
Subjects:Sciences > Geology > Geodynamics
ID Code:10494
Deposited On:22 Apr 2010 12:04
Last Modified:05 May 2015 16:52

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