NASA launches Jupiter probe

August 5th, 2011 - 7:51 pm ICT by Aishwarya Bhatt  

Florida, Aug 5 (THAINDIAN NEWS) NASA will on Friday launch a spacecraft in a mission to unravel the mystery of Jupiter. The spacecraft which is dubbed Juno is expected to reach Jupiter in 2016.

Juno project manager from NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Jan Chodas, announced that, “Our next move will be much farther - about 1,740 million miles [2,800 million kilometers] to Jupiter. The rollout completes Juno’s journey on Earth, and now we’re excited to be taking our first step into space.”

Scientists say the spacecraft will reach the orbit of earth after eleven minutes of its launch. The craft will stay temporary on earth’s orbit for sometime before starting on its journey to Jupiter about 30 minutes later. That phase will start with a nine-minute burn of the rocket. After that it will take five years for Juno to get to its final destination where NASA hopes to collect data that will help them understand the largest planet in the solar system.

Juno will be going into space with some artifacts. On board will be three figurines and a plaque which is dedicated to the famous astronomer Galileo Galilei.

It was Galileo who first detected that Jupiter had moons orbiting around it. He made the discovery in 1610.

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