Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Earth, by Juno

On October 9, NASA's Juno spacecraft flew past Earth, using our home planet's gravity to get the final boost it needed to reach Jupiter. The JunoCam instrument captured this monochrome view of Earth, and other instruments were tested to ensure they work as designed during a close planetary encounter.

The Juno spacecraft was launched from NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida on August 5, 2011. Juno's rocket, the Atlas 551, was only capable of giving Juno enough energy or speed to reach the asteroid belt, at which point the Sun's gravity pulled Juno back toward the inner solar system. The Earth flyby gravity assist put Juno on course for arrival at Jupiter on July 4, 2016.

Photo credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Malin Space Science Systems

Note: For more information, see PIA17516: Juno's Earth Flyby (Artist's Rendering).

No comments: