The Juno probe is scheduled to enter orbit around Jupiter on Monday after a nearly five-year trek through deep space.
Juno will then study Jupiter intensively over the next year and a half, peering deep inside the gas giant to help researchers better understand how it formed and evolved — information that should shed light on planet-formation processes in general.
With the start of the mission nearly underway, here’s what you need to know.
A combination of the gravitational tug of Jupiter, an orbit just 2,900 miles above the surface of the planet, and its initial launch velocity will have the craft zipping along at 129,000 mph.
The craft will study the planet for two years in a very eccentric orbit to protect it from Jupiter’s harsh radiation, swooping by the planet every 14 days.Whitson will replace the failed MDM with a spare unit on the Starboard Zero truss.The truss is attached to the space-facing side of the U. Destiny lab module and is the centerpiece of the station’s truss structure which houses the solar arrays, radiators and cooling loops.NASA didn’t send an orbiter to Jupiter until Galileo was launched in 1989, taking a more leisurely pace to Jupiter than any previous visitors in order to enable a gravitational capture.The probe arrived in 1995 and studied the planet and its moons for eight years before plunging to its death into Jupiter in 2003 to ensure none of the moons became contaminated, as Europa and Ganymede (and to a lesser extent, Callisto) are believed to have oceans and the possibility of life.The story is told from the point of view of a group of human explorers who intercept the ship in an attempt to unlock its mysteries.This novel won both the Hugo After an asteroid falls in Northeast Italy in 2077, creating a major disaster, the government of Earth sets up the Spaceguard system as an early warning of arrivals from deep space.A few years later, Voyagers 1 and 2 performed flybys in 1979, the first in March and the next in July.Those crafts took breathtaking photos of the systems and gave the first hints that Jupiter’s moon, Europa, may harbor an ocean.The "Rama" of the title is an alien starship, initially mistaken for an asteroid categorised as "31/439".It is detected by astronomers in the year 2131 while it is still outside the orbit of Jupiter.