One Moon One Ocean: Star Whales


Not long ago, scientists pinpointed Europa, one of Jupiter’s moons, as a potential home for extraterrestrial life. The entire surface of this celestial body is covered by a vast and cold ocean - it is 60 mi. (96 km) deep and covered in thick ice. Importantly, it contains organics and salt, the ingredients for life.

We now know that their hunch was right. Using remote imaging and heat sensing technology, researchers have just confirmed the existence of large, warm-blooded animals on Europa: whales. The new species has been dubbed starwhal (Cetaceanus europus).

Because of their great size, whales are the easiest life to detect, but there is likely to be more life up there with them. We believe we can safely assume that further incredible discoveries of a rich ecosystem surrounding them in the seas of Europa are forthcoming. Results from data analysis are expected to be completed soon, providing more details but right now what we know for sure is that the space whales are definitely there.

There are now many questions that have yet to be addressed: How long have the whales lived on Europa? Can we bring them to Earth? Are they endangered? How can we save them? Can I pet one? What’s happening? Who am I? What is my purpose in life?

While many may find this discovery highly improbable it was not entirely unforeseen. Anecdotal observations have been made in the past about the existence of space whales (read more here). Interestingly, according to these claims, those whales previously observed were confirmed to be sentient. However, this is the first documentation of their natural existence in an extraterrestrial ocean.

It is on this exciting note that we are thrilled to announce our brand new campaign, Star Whales. Building on MacGillivray Freeman Films’s history of sending IMAX cameras where they’ve never been before, we will send a documentary film crew to Europa to, for the first time ever in history, capture Cetaceanus europus on film!

The film will be coupled with a high-powered media blitz to raise awareness of Europa’s whales and the potential threats to their survival. We encourage you to join us on this exciting journey, which will be broadcasted weekly here, live, on our MFLive Ustream channel. With your help, we will save the Europa space whale!


It has been postulated that fractures in the icy surface of the planet track the whales’ migration routes and provide them access to surface air to breathe. Photo by NASA/JPL/DLR via Wikimedia Commons, Public Domain. 

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