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Juno probe enters into orbit around Jupiter


Posted on Tuesday, 5 July, 2016 | Comment icon 60 comments

The Juno spacecraft has finally arrived at Jupiter. Image Credit: NASA / JPL
NASA's Juno spacecraft has successfully reached its destination after a journey spanning five years.
There were cheers of jubilation from the team at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory this morning as the news came in that the probe had survived its complex orbital insertion manoeuvre.

"It’s overwhelming," said Juno's project manager Diane Brown. "The risks that were overcome, it’s amazing. The more you know about the mission the more you know about how tricky it was."

During its time in orbit around the gas giant the $1.1 billion spacecraft will aim to unravel many of Jupiter's secrets including what lies deep beneath its swirling atmosphere, how the planet came to form and what processes are responsible for generating its complex weather systems.

"What Juno’s about is looking beneath that surface," said principal investigator Scott Bolton.

"We’ve got to go down and look at what’s inside, see how it’s built, how deep these features go, learn about its real secrets."

The probe's instruments include a microwave radiometer, a magnetometer, an infrared auroral mapper and a high-resolution color camera that will take detailed shots of Jupiter's polar regions.

Over the course of 37 orbits lasting 14 days each, Juno will get within 2,600 miles of the gas giant's swirling clouds as it peers down through the atmosphere in the hope of confirming whether or not the planet actually has a solid core at its center.

"The primary goal is to understand the recipe for how you make a solar system," said Bolton. "What we can tell from our instruments can help us learn how planets formed in the first place."

Source: The Guardian | Comments (60)

Tags: Juno, Jupiter

Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #51 Posted by Merc14 on 13 July, 2016, 1:07
That is not only great news but absolutely beautiful.    My new desktop background!  
Comment icon #52 Posted by seeder on 13 July, 2016, 1:08
cant wait!!   
Comment icon #53 Posted by Astra. on 13 July, 2016, 10:59
Wow - well the wait has certainly been worth it. I can't wait until the other images start trickling through. I'd say we're definitely in for many more wondrous treats.
Comment icon #54 Posted by jethrofloyd on 14 July, 2016, 12:14
Juno snaps its first pic of Jupiter https://www.sciencenews.org/article/juno-snaps-its-first-pic-jupiter?tgt=nr NASA’s Juno spacecraft has sent back its first picture of Jupiter since arriving at the planet July 4 (SN: 7/23/16, p. 14). The image, taken July 10 when the spacecraft was 4.3 million kilometers from Jupiter, shows off the planet’s clouds, its Great Red Spot (a storm a bit wider than Earth) and three of its moons (Io, Europa and Ganymede).
Comment icon #55 Posted by Waspie_Dwarf on 29 July, 2016, 17:55
Five Years Post-Launch, Juno Is at a Turning Point  
Comment icon #56 Posted by Merc14 on 29 July, 2016, 18:35
I didn't know that all the instruments have successfully completed their checks and are ready to go.   Great news!  The fall back to Jupiter should be fun to watch.
Comment icon #57 Posted by Waspie_Dwarf on 26 August, 2016, 12:24
NASA's Juno to Soar Closest to Jupiter This Saturday  
Comment icon #58 Posted by Merc14 on 26 August, 2016, 12:54
Can't wait for these first close-up images of Jupiter.
Comment icon #59 Posted by Myles on 26 August, 2016, 13:39
I'm excited about the pics.  Not so much about all the people who will claim to see something made by aliens. 
Comment icon #60 Posted by Merc14 on 26 August, 2016, 13:41
With that in mind, here is a great little article on pareidolia  http://earthsky.org/human-world/seeing-things-that-arent-there


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