On June 24th, NASA reported that the Juno spacecraft was just 5.5 million miles (8.9 million kilometers) from Jupiter. The mission subsequently passed several critical milestones that placed the craft in orbit around the gas giant on July 4th.
Dr. Sushil Atreya, Professor of Atmospheric Science in the College of Engineering Climate & Space department and Co-Investigator on the Juno mission, is optimistic about the potential for gaining knowledge on the formation of our galactic neighborhood.
“Juno’s determination of the water abundance in Jupiter will provide the missing piece of the puzzle of the formation of Jupiter and its atmosphere, which, in turn, would be crucial to an understanding of the origin and evolution of solar systems.”
Dr. Atreya’s investigation focus is atmospheric composition, particularly water, using microwave radiometer instruments and complementary data from the Jovian Infrared Auroral Mapper aboard the Juno spacecraft.
For more information about the current state of the Juno mission, please visit the NASA website.