La strada che porta allo spazio passa per il nostro bel Paese.

ASI - Agenzia Spaziale Italiana - News ASI - Agenzia Spaziale Italiana - News
JUPITER

Juno completed its tenth science flyby

The spacecraft completed its tenth close approach of Jupiter. All of Juno's eight science instruments were on collecting data during the flyby

Juno accomplished a close flyby over Jupiter’s churning atmosphere on Wednesday, Feb. 7, successfully completing its tenth science orbit. The closest approach was at 6:36 a.m. PST (9:36 a.m. PST) Earth-received time. At the time of perijove (the point in Juno's orbit when it is closest to the planet's center), the spacecraft will be about 3,500 kilometers above the planet's cloud tops.

 

This flyby was a gravity science orientation pass. During orbits that highlight gravity experiments, Juno is in an Earth-pointed orientation that allows both the X-band and Ka-Band transmitter to downlink data in real-time to one of the antennas of NASA's Deep Space Network in Goldstone, California. All of Juno’s science instruments and the spacecraft’s JunoCam were in operation during the flyby, collecting data that is now being returned to Earth.

 

The probe's journey began just over five years ago, on 5 August 2011, and it arrived at its destination, Jupiter's orbit, on 4 July this year (in Italy, it was at dawn on the following day) after travelling a distance of approximately three billion kilometres. 


JUNO's goal is to analyse the Jupiter’s characteristics as representative of the giant planets. The Solar System’s ‘heavyweight’ can, in fact, offer fundamentally important data not only for gaining deeper knowledge of the origin of the System itself, but also for analysing those of the planetary systems that are gradually discovered around other stars, with particular reference to those exoplanets that have a similar mass to that of Jupiter. 

JUNO's heart is the Italian JIRAM (Jovian InfraRed Auroral Mapper), financed by ASI, built by Leonardo-Finmeccanica and operated under the scientific responsibility of INAF's Institute of Astrophysics and Planetology (IAPS). 

JUNO's other Italian component is KaT (Ka-Band Translator), a radio science instrument designed by the 'La Sapienza' University of Rome, built by Thales Alenia Space Italia (A Thales/Leonardo-Finmeccanica company) again with ASI's support.