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Space & Astronomy

NASA's Juno spacecraft is halfway to Jupiter

By T.K. Randall
August 13, 2013 · Comment icon 15 comments

Image Credit: NASA
Set to explore beneath Jupiter's obscuring cloud cover, the probe will reach its destination by 2016.
Now officially at the half way point of its journey, the probe will actually return to within 347 miles of Earth and use it as a gravitational slingshot to achieve a higher speed of 16,330 mph on its final approach to Jupiter. Juno was launched in 2011 and is designed to circle Jupiter 33 times, during which it will use a variety of instruments to take a good hard look at what lies beneath the enigmatic cloud cover of the gas giant.

"Juno's odometer just clicked over to 9.464 astronomical units," said principal investigator Scott Bolton. "The team is looking forward, preparing for the day we enter orbit around the most massive planet in our solar system."
Juno's name comes from Greek and Roman mythology. The god Jupiter drew a veil of clouds around himself to hide his mischief, and his wife, the goddess Juno, was able to peer through the clouds and reveal Jupiter's true nature.


Source: NASA | Comments (15)




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Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #6 Posted by seeder 11 years ago
3 more years to start getting pictures and data about Jupiter...regarding space science, we live in very exciting times. we do indeed. Fingers crossed nothing goes wrong at all, and we have as much data as its designed to collect.
Comment icon #7 Posted by Aggie 11 years ago
The flyby anomaly is an unexpected energy increase during Earth-flybys of spacecraft. It causes a significant unaccounted velocity increase of over 13 mm/s during flybys. Thanks for asking. Thank you! Very interesting....and you are saying we'll get some data on that in 2 months? we do indeed. Fingers crossed nothing goes wrong at all, and we have as much data as its designed to collect. I hope so too, I really want to know if they find a rock core....or is it just gas? Is there water? Oxygen? Hydrogen?...LOL so many questions!!
Comment icon #8 Posted by NatureBoff 11 years ago
Thank you! Very interesting....and you are saying we'll get some data on that in 2 months? A pleasure. Hopefully so, it doesn't happen every time that a spacecraft passes nearby. The scientists will be looking closely for an effect though. If it happens, it will be BIG news and bring the unexplained anomaly into the limelight again. This has to be explained to give a full understanding of gravity and other planetary forces.
Comment icon #9 Posted by moonshadow60 11 years ago
So fascinating. I will be looking forward to hearing about this and the pictures, if there are any to see, when it finally reaches its destination.
Comment icon #10 Posted by Waspie_Dwarf 11 years ago
NatureBoff, let's not take this too far off topic please. If you wish to discuss the fly-by anomaly them by all means provide a link to one of your existing threads on the subject.
Comment icon #11 Posted by pallidin 11 years ago
I realize that space exploration is expensive, and that in our budget times may seem inappropriate to some(not those here on this thread) Having always been a big conscientious supporter of NASA/JPL and related domestic/foreign agencies and universites that make these types of things possible, I wish the best of luck and technology on this mission.
Comment icon #12 Posted by Razer 11 years ago
I thought it just got halfway to Jupiter and in the article is says.. On Oct. 9, Juno will come within 347 miles (559 kilometers) of Earth," said the mission's Project Manager Rick Nybakken of NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif. "The Earth flyby will give Juno a kick in the pants, boosting its velocity by 16,330 mph (about 7.3 kilometers per second). From there, it's next stop Jupiter. Seems a long way to go just to come back and get a kick in the pants, to go back where it was heading, halfway there in the first place. How does it get halfway there and then come back towards ... [More]
Comment icon #13 Posted by NatureBoff 11 years ago
I thought it just got halfway to Jupiter and in the article is says.. On Oct. 9, Juno will come within 347 miles (559 kilometers) of Earth," said the mission's Project Manager Rick Nybakken of NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif. "The Earth flyby will give Juno a kick in the pants, boosting its velocity by 16,330 mph (about 7.3 kilometers per second). From there, it's next stop Jupiter. Seems a long way to go just to come back and get a kick in the pants, to go back where it was heading, halfway there in the first place. How does it get halfway there and then come back towards ... [More]
Comment icon #14 Posted by NatureBoff 11 years ago
I thought it just got halfway to Jupiter and in the article is says.. On Oct. 9, Juno will come within 347 miles (559 kilometers) of Earth," said the mission's Project Manager Rick Nybakken of NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif. "The Earth flyby will give Juno a kick in the pants, boosting its velocity by 16,330 mph (about 7.3 kilometers per second). From there, it's next stop Jupiter. Seems a long way to go just to come back and get a kick in the pants, to go back where it was heading, halfway there in the first place. How does it get halfway there and then come back towards ... [More]
Comment icon #15 Posted by Spacenut56 11 years ago
I will be excited about any further info on Europa myself.


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