NASA - JUNO Mission logo.
July 8, 2016
Mission Status Report
Image above: Artist's concept of NASA's Juno spacecraft crossing the orbits of Jupiter. Image Credits: NASA/JPL-Caltech.
The engineers and scientists working on NASA’s Juno mission have been busying themselves, getting their newly arrived Jupiter orbiter ready for operations around the largest planetary inhabitant in the solar system. Juno successfully entered Jupiter's orbit during a 35-minute engine burn on Monday, July 4. Confirmation that the burn had completed was received on Earth at 8:53 pm. PDT (11:53 p.m. EDT) that evening.
As planned, the spacecraft returned to high-rate communications on July 5 and powered up five of its science instruments on July 6. Per the mission plan, the remaining science instruments will be powered up before the end of the month. Juno’s science instruments had been turned off in the days leading up to Jupiter orbit insertion.
The Juno team has scheduled a short trajectory correction maneuver on July 13 to refine the orbit around Jupiter.
Animation of Juno 14-day orbits starting in late 2016. Credits: NASA/JPL-Caltech
"Prior to launch five years ago we planned a date and time for the Jupiter orbit insertion burn and the team nailed it,” said Rick Nybakken, project manager for Juno from NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California. "We are in our planned 53.4 day orbit. Now we are focusing on preparing for our fourth and final main engine burn, which will put us in our 14-day science orbit on October 19.”
The next time Juno’s orbit carries it close by the planet will be on Aug. 27. The flyby is expected to provide some preliminary science data.
“We had to turn all our beautiful instruments off to help ensure a successful Jupiter orbit insertion on July 4,” said Scott Bolton, Juno principal investigator from the Southwest Research Institute in San Antonio. “But next time around we will have our eyes and ears open. You can expect us to release some information about our findings around September 1.”
Juno Approach Movie of Jupiter and the Galilean Moons
Video above: NASA's Juno spacecraft captured a unique time-lapse movie of the Galilean satellites in motion about Jupiter. The movie begins on June 12th with Juno 10 million miles from Jupiter, and ends on June 29th, 3 million miles distant. Video Credits: NASA/JPL-Caltech.
The Juno spacecraft launched on Aug. 5, 2011, from Cape Canaveral, Florida.
JPL manages the Juno mission for the principal investigator, Scott Bolton, of 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. Lockheed Martin Space Systems, Denver, built the spacecraft. Caltech in Pasadena manages JPL for NASA.
More information on the Juno mission is available at: http://www.nasa.gov/juno
The public can follow the mission on Facebook and Twitter at:
Image (mentioned), Animation (mentioned), Video (mentioned), Text, Credits: NASA/Dwayne Brown / Laurie Cantillo/JPL/DC Agle/Tony Greicius.