Artist illustration of the Juice probe. Credit: ESA

Juno and Juice to explore Jupiter

By Jenny Winder 28 December 2012

(Sen) – In August 2011 NASA’s Juno spacecraft launched on its long 5 year journey to Jupiter. Having performed two deep space manoeuvres earlier this year, the space craft is currently heading back towards the inner Solar Sytstem for a gravity assist flyby of Earth in October 2013 that will set it on course to arrive at Jupiter in July 2016.

On arrival Juno will be placed in a polar orbit. It’s main mission is to understand the origin and evolution of Jupiter; to determine how much water is in Jupiter’s atmosphere and measure its composition, temperature, cloud motions and deep winds, which will help scientists understand the planet’s formation. It will map Jupiter’s magnetic and gravity fields, to reveal the planet’s deep structure. Juno will also study Jupiter’s magnetosphere near the poles to find out how the planet’s enormous magnetic force field affects its atmosphere. After 33 orbits of Jupiter, Juno will de-orbit and crash into the planet in October 2017.

Read more: Juno and Juice to explore Jupiter — SEN.

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