Juno mission to Jupiter gets an update

Jupiter shows off its bands of clouds in an image captured during the Juno probe’s Perijove 13 encounter last month. (NASA / JPL-Caltech / SwRI / MSSS / David Marriott)

News Brief: NASA has updated its plans for the Juno mission to Jupiter to support science operations through mid-2021, adding 41 more months to the orbiter’s planned observations. Juno arrived at the giant planet nearly two years ago and has been mapping the giant planet’s magnetic field as well as analyzing its composition. It circles Jupiter in a 53-day orbit rather than the originally planned 14-day orbit, due to worries about valves on the probe’s fuel system. A panel of experts determined that the updated plan will give the $1 billion mission enough time to achieve its primary science objectives despite the orbital limitations. The update also means there’ll be more of those sweet, sweet pictures from the JunoCam imager.

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