According to NASA, Juno passed Jupiter at a speed of around 129,000 mph (208,000 km/h), skimming 2,700 miles (4,400 kilometers) over Jupiter’s cloud tops. I need to quit gazing at the pictures; hold my coffee. Even so, is that real?
The first solar-powered spacecraft dispatched to explore Jupiter, the biggest planet in our solar system, is NASA’s Juno. The goal of Juno’s mission is to monitor the gas giant’s gravity and magnetic field while orbiting it in polar orbit to understand its structure. Jupiter research will help astronomers better comprehend the massive planets found across the universe.
The US$1 billion spacecraft has thus far been successful in capturing a photograph of Jupiter’s poles, discovering extremely strange cloud formations, hearing and recording enigmatic auroras, and performing an unprecedented deep scan into the planet’s dense cloud tops. We are happy for you, Juno.
Although research is the main goal of the mission, NASA spacecraft are renowned for having excellent photographic capabilities.
Is it time to give a Pulitzer Prize for Photography to one of those spacecraft, just as the Cassini probe just sent back unparalleled photographs of Saturn? Juno too has its share of magnificent images.
In spite of being only the second probe to circle Jupiter, Juno is the ninth probe that Earth has deployed to Jupiter and the first to take incredibly stunning photos of the gas giant.
I need to quit gazing at the pictures; hold my coffee. Even so, is that real?