Open main menu

List of largest lakes and seas in the Solar System

Listed below are the largest lakes and seas on various worlds in the Solar System. The table includes single bodies of water or other liquid on or near the surface of a solid body (terrestrial planet, planetoid, or moon). All objects on this list are expected to be round, hence anything that is part of a belt or disc is expected to be a dwarf planet.

Cold surface oceans or lakes are found on two worlds, Earth and Saturn's moon Titan. Lava lakes are found on Earth and Jupiter's moon Io. Subsurface oceans or seas occur on the other Galilean moons of Jupiter, Saturn's moons Titan and Enceladus, and are suspected to exist on the some of Saturn's other moons, the asteroid Ceres, the larger trans-Neptunian objects, and ice planets in planetary systems. Recent analysis of the interior of Ganymede (the largest moon of Jupiter), taking into account the effects of salt, suggests that it and some of the other icy bodies may not have a single interior global ocean but several stacked ones, separated by different phases of ice, with the lowest liquid layer adjacent to the rocky mantle below.[1][2]

ListEdit

Body Type of object Lake/sea Composition Location Area (km2) Average depth (km) Notes
Earth planet
(terrestrial)
World Ocean salt water surface 361,300,000 3.68 (max 11.02)   71% of Earth's surface
Caspian Sea salt water surface 371,000 0.21 (max 1.02)   smallest ocean (geologically)
(0.07% of Earth's surface)
Lake Michigan–Huron fresh water surface 117,400 0.07 (max 0.28)   largest lake today (geologically)
West Siberian Glacial Lake fresh water surface c. 880,000
(50–60 ka)
0.036 glacial lakes during the Ice Age
Lake Agassiz fresh water surface c. 440,000 (max) ?
Mars planet
(terrestrial)
south-polar lake salt water? subglacial c. 200 (shallow, > 0.2 m) there may be additional such lakes
Ceres asteroid (internal ocean) water?
water–ammonia mixture?
subsurface c. 1,000,000? possible subsurface equatorial ocean
Io moon of Jupiter Gish Bar Patera lava surface 9,600 ?  
Loki Patera lava surface < 32,000 ?  
Europa moon of Jupiter (internal global ocean) water?
water–ammonia mixture?
subsurface c. 30,000,000 est. 50–100 global ocean under 10 to 30 km of ice, perhaps twice the volume of Earth's ocean
Ganymede moon of Jupiter (internal global ocean) salt water? subsurface c. 80,000,000 apiece 100 100 km thick, under 150 km of ice, six times the volume of Earth's ocean;[3]
possibly three oceans, one under another
Callisto moon of Jupiter (internal global ocean) water?
water–ammonia mixture?
subsurface c. 65,000,000 120–180 global ocean under 135 to 150 km of ice
Enceladus moon of Saturn (internal global ocean) (salt?) water subsurface c. 650,000 26–31 global ocean under 21–26 km of ice, based on libration[4]
Dione moon of Saturn (internal global ocean) water?
water–ammonia mixture?
subsurface c. 1,000,000 ? possible global ocean under the ice
Rhea moon of Saturn (internal global ocean) water?
water–ammonia mixture?
subsurface c. 1,000,000–2,000,000 c. 15 possible global ocean under the ice (c. 400 km)[a]
Titan moon of Saturn Kraken Mare hydrocarbons surface ≈ 400,000
(0.5% of Titan's surface)
?  
Ligeia Mare hydrocarbons surface 126,000 (0.17 in places)  
(internal global ocean) water?
water–ammonia mixture?
subsurface c. 80,000,000 < 300 global ocean of water under < 100 km of ice
Titania moon of Uranus (internal global ocean) water?
water–ammonia mixture?
subsurface c. 5,000,000 c. 15–50 possible global ocean under the ice (c. 150–200 km)
Oberon moon of Uranus (internal global ocean) water?
water–ammonia mixture?
subsurface c. 3,000,000 c. 15–40 possible global ocean under the ice (c. 250 km)
Triton moon of Neptune (internal global ocean) water?
water–ammonia mixture?
subsurface c. 20,000,000 c. 150–200 possible global ocean under the ice (c. 150–200 km)
Orcus Kuiper belt object
(plutino)
(internal global ocean) water?
water–ammonia mixture?
subsurface c. 500,000 c. 15 possible global ocean under the ice (c. 200 km)
Pluto Kuiper belt object
(plutino)
(internal global ocean) water?
water–ammonia mixture?
subsurface c. 10,000,000–15,000,000 c. 100–180 possible global ocean under the ice (c. 150–230 km)
Makemake Kuiper belt object
(cubewano)
(internal global ocean) water?
water–ammonia mixture?
subsurface c. 3,000,000 ? possible global ocean under the ice
2007 OR10 scattered disc object (internal global ocean) water?
water–ammonia mixture?
subsurface c. 2,000,000–3,000,000 ? possible global ocean under the ice
Eris scattered disc object (internal global ocean) water?
water–ammonia mixture?
subsurface c. 10,000,000 c. 150–200 possible global ocean under the ice (c. 150–250 km)
Sedna sednoid (internal global ocean) water?
water–ammonia mixture?
subsurface c. 1,000,000 c. 15 possible global ocean under the ice (c. 200 km)

See alsoEdit

NotesEdit

  1. ^ Possible depending on the degree of differentiation of the interior,[5] which is uncertain.[6]

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ Clavin, W. (2014-05-01). "Ganymede May Harbor 'Club Sandwich' of Oceans and Ice". Press release. Jet Propulsion Laboratory. Archived from the original on 2014-05-02. Retrieved 2014-05-04.
  2. ^ Vance, S.; Bouffard, M.; Choukroun, M.; Sotin, C. (2014-04-12). "Ganymede's internal structure including thermodynamics of magnesium sulfate oceans in contact with ice". Planetary and Space Science. 96: 62–70. Bibcode:2014P&SS...96...62V. doi:10.1016/j.pss.2014.03.011.
  3. ^ "Hubble observations suggest underground ocean on Jupiter's largest moon Ganymede". NASA press release. March 12, 2015. Retrieved 2015-10-03.
  4. ^ Thomas, P. C.; Tajeddine, R.; Tiscareno, M. S.; Burns, J. A.; Joseph, J.; Loredo, T. J.; Helfenstein, P.; Porco, C. (2016). "Enceladus's measured physical libration requires a global subsurface ocean". Icarus. 264: 37–47. arXiv:1509.07555. Bibcode:2016Icar..264...37T. doi:10.1016/j.icarus.2015.08.037.
  5. ^ Hussmann, H.; Sohl, F.; Spohn, T. (November 2006). "Subsurface oceans and deep interiors of medium-sized outer planet satellites and large trans-neptunian objects". Icarus. 185 (1): 258–273. Bibcode:2006Icar..185..258H. doi:10.1016/j.icarus.2006.06.005.
  6. ^ Tortora, P.; Zannoni, M.; Hemingway, D.; Nimmo, F.; Jacobson, R. A.; Iess, L.; Parisi, M. (January 2016). "Rhea gravity field and interior modeling from Cassini data analysis". Icarus. 264: 264–273. Bibcode:2016Icar..264..264T. doi:10.1016/j.icarus.2015.09.022.

External linksEdit