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    NASA’s Juno spacecraft reaches Jupiter

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    Juno completed a five-year cruise to Jupiter arriving on July 4,2016.The spacecraft will travel over a total distance of roughly 2.8 billion kms ,the spacecraft will orbit Jupiter 37 times over the course of 20 months.

    Juno is a Nasa New Frontiers Mission currently orbiting the planet Jupiter.Juno was launched from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station on 5th  August 2011 and arrived on % July 2016.

    The spacecraft is in a polar orbit to study Jupiter’s composition, gravity field, magnetic field and polar magnetosphere.Juno will also search for clues about how the planet formed,including whether it has a rocky core, the amount of water present within the deep atmosphere, mass distribution and its deep winds which can reach speeds of 618km per hour (384mph).

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    Juno is the second spacecraft to orbit the planet Jupiter, Galileo probe first which orbited from 1995-2003.The Juno space craft is powered by solar arrays, commonly used by satellites orbiting Earth and working in the inner Solar System,whereas radio isotopethermoelectric generators are commonly used for missions to the outer Solar System and beyond,for Juno, however, three solar array wings, the largest ever deployed on a planetary probe, will play an integral role in stabilizing the spacecraft and generating power.

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    Juno’s trajectory used a gravity assist speed boost from the Earth accomplished through an Earth fly by two years(October 2013)after its August 5,2011 launch.

    Today on July 5,2016 the space craft performed an orbit insertion burn to slow it enough to allow capture. It will do two 53 days orbits before performing another burn on 19th October that will bring it into a 14 day polar orbit.

     

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