The spacecraft will orbit the planet's poles 33 times and use its collection of eight science instruments to probe beneath the gas giant's obscuring cloud cover to learn more about its origins, structure, atmosphere and magnetosphere, and look for a potential solid planetary core.The mission is highly technical, so it may be all that exciting for non-planetary scientists, but at least we should get a stream of cool pictures. Plus at the end of its year of orbiting the spaceship will crash into Jupiter, and it might send up all sorts of new data on its way down.
Saturday, August 6, 2011
Juno on the Way to Jupiter
Yesterday's launch of the Juno space probe, beginning its five-year journey to Jupiter, where it will spend a year studying the planet: