Juno Spacecraft Orbiting Jupiter, and Will It Discover Life on the World?

NASA says it has received a signal from 540 million miles across the solar system, confirming its Juno spacecraft has successfully started orbiting Jupiter, the largest planet in our solar system.

Now that the Juno spacecraft is settled in orbit around Jupiter, the real work is about to begin.

Jim Green, director, Planetary Science Division, NASA, left, talks during a media briefing joined by Scott Bolton, Juno principal investigator, second from left, Rick Nybakken, Juno project manager, second from right, and Heidi Becker, Juno radiation monitoring investigation Lead, at Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) in Pasadena, Calif., on Monday, July 4, 2016.

Juno will be in an orbit passing over Jupiter's poles, providing a first close look at these regions.

The rocket managed to capture the eerie sounds of Jupiter as the probe heads towards it.

In the weeks leading up to the encounter, Juno snapped pictures of the giant planet and its four inner moons dancing around it. Scientists were surprised to see Jupiter's second-largest moon, Callisto, appearing dimmer than expected.

Boffins have said that the mysterious sound is caused by solar winds hitting Jupiter at a million miles per hour in what is known as a bow shock.

He added: "It causes material to be flung about and we believe it migrated inwards and outwards during the early stages of the solar system's formation". I'm the farthest solar-powered spacecraft from Earth.

"You will get a limited number of votes per orbit to devote to your favorite points of interest", NASA said.

As he described the difficulty of getting a spacecraft through that radiation, Bolton also noted Jupiter's ring of debris that could present real problems to Juno's engine - which will need to have its nozzle open and pointed toward the planet to take speed off of the craft.

It is also installed with a JunoCam, a citizen science camera that allows amateur astronomers to decide which of Jupiter's swirling storm clouds should be photographed. What Juno tells us about Jupiter will detail the planet's magnetic and gravitational fields and interior structure, revealing how it was formed and providing clues to our own planet's humble beginnings. The orbit will be shortened to 14 days in October, setting up repeated low-altitude passes within a few thousand miles of Jupiter's turbulent atmosphere.

Juno is also expected to end its mission on February 20, 2018, when it crashes into the gas giant as well.

What are the great mysteries about Jupiter?

"In other solar systems we've seen gas giants close to their stars, and maybe they've migrated in". "But. studying the planet has only really been done skin deep". It's an enormous planet, it's hung on to all the original material in our collapsing cloud.

"We want to know, for instance, is the core in the center of Jupiter a solid, rocky core? So it's all about understanding the order of the evolution of our planets and the composition of the cloud that collapsed creating them".

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