Juno

Juno Mission

NASA’s Juno mission, led by Dr Scott Bolton of the Southwest Research Institute in San Antonio, Texas, has revolutionised our views of the interior, atmosphere, and magnetosphere of the giant planet Jupiter.

Juno was selected as a New Frontiers mission in 2005, and was built by Lockheed Martin Corporation, with project management by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, and instruments provided by a number of US and Italian institutes.  It was launched by an Atlas V vehicle from Cape Canaveral on 5 August 2011, undertook a near-Earth fly-by on 10 October 2013 to pick up additional speed to send the spacecraft onward to Jupiter, and was inserted into polar orbit at Jupiter on 4 July 2016.

The unique polar orbit allows Juno to explore Jupiter’s polar atmosphere and auroras in exquisite detail, whilst measuring the magnetic and electric properties of the magnetosphere at high latitudes.  The Juno spacecraft comes within a few thousand kilometres of Jupiter’s swirling clouds once every 53 days (known as perijoves), and over the course of the prime and extended mission (some 70+ perijoves) it will map the entire planet several times over.  

NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, California, manages the Juno mission for the principal investigator, Scott Bolton, of the Southwest Research Institute in San Antonio. Juno is part of NASA's New Frontiers Program, which is managed at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama, for NASA's Science Mission Directorate. The Italian Space Agency (ASI), contributed two instruments, a Ka-band frequency translator (KaT) and the Jovian Infrared Auroral Mapper (JIRAM). Lockheed Martin Space, Denver, built the spacecraft.

 

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