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NASA’s Europa Mission to Jupiter's Icy Moon [updated]


Waspie_Dwarf

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NASA’s Europa Probe Gets a Hotline to Earth

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The addition of a high-gain antenna will enable the agency’s Europa Clipper spacecraft – set to launch in October 2024 – to communicate with mission controllers hundreds of millions of miles away.

NASA’s Europa Clipper is designed to seek out conditions suitable for life on an ice-covered moon of Jupiter. On Aug. 14, the spacecraft received a piece of hardware central to that quest: the massive dish-shaped high-gain antenna.

Stretching 10 feet (3 meters) across the spacecraft’s body, the high-gain antenna is the largest and most prominent of a suite of antennas on Europa Clipper. The spacecraft will need it as it investigates the ice-cloaked moon that it’s named after, Europa, some 444 million miles (715 million kilometers) from Earth. A major mission goal is to learn more about the moon’s subsurface ocean, which might harbor a habitable environment.

Read More: NASA

 

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How NASA Is Protecting Europa Clipper From Space Radiation

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Engineers and technicians are seen closing the vault of NASA’s Europa Clipper in the main clean room of the Spacecraft Assembly Facility at JPL on Oct. 7. The vault will protect the electronics of the spacecraft as it orbits Jupiter.
NASA/JPL-Caltech

To explore the mysterious ice-encrusted moon Europa, the mission will need to endure bombardment by radiation and high-energy particles surrounding Jupiter.

When NASA’s Europa Clipper begins orbiting Jupiter to investigate whether its ice-encased moon, Europa, has conditions suitable for life, the spacecraft will pass repeatedly through one of the most punishing radiation environments in our solar system.

Hardening the spacecraft against potential damage from that radiation is no easy task. But on Oct. 7, the mission put the final piece of the spacecraft’s “armor” in place when it sealed the vault, a container specially designed to shield Europa Clipper’s sophisticated electronics. The probe is being put together, piece by piece, in the Spacecraft Assembly Facility at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Southern California ahead of its launch in October 2024.

Read More: ➡️ NASA

 

 

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merging topics - removed related story.
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Poised for Science: NASA’s Europa Clipper Instruments Are All Aboard

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NASA’s Europa Clipper, with all of its instruments installed, is visible in the clean room of High Bay 1 at the agency’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory on Jan. 19. The tent around the spacecraft was erected to support electromagnetic testing.
NASA/JPL-Caltech

 

The science performed by the complex suite of instruments recently added to the spacecraft will reveal whether Jupiter’s moon Europa has conditions that could support life.

With less than nine months remaining in the countdown to launch, NASA’s Europa Clipper mission has passed a major milestone: Its science instruments have been added to the massive spacecraft, which is being assembled at the agency’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Southern California.

Read More: ➡️ NASA

 

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  • The title was changed to Assembly of NASA’s Europa Probe [updated]

Europa Clipper Solar Arrays Arrive at NASA for Jupiter Moon Mission

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The transport carrier containing the five-panel solar arrays for NASA’s Europa Clipper spacecraft arrives at the Payload Hazardous Servicing Facility at the agency’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida on Wednesday, Feb. 21, 2024. Photo credit: NASA/ Ben Smegelsky

NASA’s mission to study Jupiter’s icy moon Europa completed another milestone as power supply hardware for the Europa Clipper spacecraft arrived on Wednesday, Feb. 21, at the agency’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida.

Workers unloaded the five-panel solar arrays at the Payload Hazardous Servicing Facility. The solar arrays will attach to the spacecraft to power it on the 1.8-billion-mile journey to Europa. Strong evidence shows an ocean beneath Europa’s crust that is twice the volume of all the Earth’s oceans combined, and scientists want to determine if any areas can support life.

Read More: ➡️ NASA

 

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NASA’s Europa Clipper Solar Arrays Successfully Deploy at Kennedy Space Center

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Technicians working inside the Payload Hazardous Servicing Facility at the agency’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida unfolded and fully extended the first of two five-panel solar arrays built for NASA’s Europa Clipper in preparation for inspection and cleaning as part of assembly, test, and launch operations.

On March 6, technicians working inside the Payload Hazardous Servicing Facility at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida unfolded and fully extended the first of two five-panel solar arrays for the agency’s Europa Clipper spacecraft. Each solar array measures 46.5 feet in length.

Read More: ➡️ NASA

 

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  • The title was changed to NASA’s Europa Mission to Jupiter's Icy Moon [updated]

NASA’s Europa Clipper Survives and Thrives in ‘Outer Space’ on Earth

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Europa Clipper is seen in the 25-Foot Space Simulator at JPL in February, before the start of thermal vacuum testing. A battery of tests ensures that the NASA spacecraft can withstand the extreme hot, cold, and airless environment of space.
NASA/JPL-Caltech

A gantlet of tests prepared the spacecraft for its challenging trip to the Jupiter system, where it will explore the icy moon Europa and its subsurface ocean.

In less than six months, NASA is set to launch Europa Clipper on a 1.6-billion-mile (2.6-billion-kilometer) voyage to Jupiter’s ocean moon Europa. From the wild vibrations of the rocket ride to the intense heat and cold of space to the punishing radiation of Jupiter, it will be a journey of extremes. The spacecraft was recently put through a series of hard-core tests at the agency’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Southern California to ensure it’s up to the challenge.

Read More: ➡️ NASA

 

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