Juno Spacecraft To Explore Jupiter's Great Spot On July 10
(Photo : GeoBeats News/YouTube screenshot)
NASA's Juno spacecraft is slated to fly over Jupiter's Great Spot on July 10 at 6:55 p.m. PDT (9:55 p.m. EDT). This will be part of Juno's sixth science flyby over Jupiter's mysterious cloud tops.
Scott Bolton, from the Southwest Research Institute in San Antonio and the principal investigator, said that Jupiter's mysterious Great Spot is probably the best known feature of the gas giant Jupiter. He further said that this monumental storm has raged on the biggest planet for centuries. Currently, Juno and her eight science instruments will explore the Great Spot to see how deep the roots of this storm go. It will also aid the scientists to understand how the giant storm works and what makes it special, as Phys.org noted.
The flyover of Juno spacecraft over the Great Spot would be the first up-close and personal view of the giant storm. This Great Spot has been examined and tracked since 1830 and is possibly existing for over 350 years. It is about 10,000 miles wide or 16,000 kilometers wide.
Juno will pass about 9,000 kilometers (5,592 miles) above the Giant Red Spot. The eight instruments of Juno and the Juno Cam will be turned on during the flyby on July 10. Meanwhile, on July 4, 2017, the Juno spacecraft will record a one-year orbit in Jupiter, according to Live Mint.
Rick Nybakken, the project manager for Juno from NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in the United States, said that the success of science collection at Jupiter is a testament to the dedication, technical abilities and creativity of the NASA and Juno team. He further said that every orbit brings them closer to the heart of the radiation belt of Jupiter. On the other hand, as of now, the Juno spacecraft has weathered the storm of electrons surrounding Jupiter better than the team could have ever imagined.