Journey to Jupiter produces remarkable images
Journey to Jupiter produces remarkable images This Aug. 27, 2016 image provided by NASA shows Jupiter's north polar region, taken by the Juno spacecraft 120,000 miles (195,000 kilometers) away from the planet. (NASA/JPL-Caltech/SwRI/MSSS via AP)
Journey to Jupiter produces remarkable images
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A NASA spacecraft has captured the best views of Jupiter yet. The views revealed turbulent storms in the planet's north pole.
Jupiter's northern polar region is stormier than expected and appears bluer than the rest of the planet. This is according to mission chief scientist Scott Bolton of the Southwest Research Institute in San Antonio, Texas.
"This image is hardly recognizable as Jupiter," he said in a statement.
On September 2, NASA released a batch of close-up pictures taken by the Juno spacecraft when it recently flew within 2,500 miles of Jupiter's dense cloud tops.
During the rendezvous that took Juno from pole to pole, the solar-powered spacecraft turned on its camera and instruments to collect data.
The first glimpse of Jupiter's poles came in 1974 when Pioneer 11 flew by on its way to Saturn.
The detailed pictures taken by Juno look "like nothing we have seen or imagined before," Bolton said.
Juno also sent back unique views of Jupiter's bright southern lights. They are considered the most powerful in the solar system.
The flyby was the first of three dozen planned close passes during the 20-month mission.
Unlike rocky Earth and Mars, Jupiter is a gas giant. It likely formed before Earth and Mars, shortly after the sun. Studying the largest planet in the solar system may hold clues to understanding how Earth and the rest of the planets formed.
After a five-year journey, Juno slipped into orbit around Jupiter in July. Juno will map the massive planet's poles, atmosphere and interior. It's the first spacecraft to carry a titanium vault. The vault is designed to shield its computer and electronics from intense radiation.
Juno is only the second mission to orbit Jupiter. When it completes its job in 2018, it will deliberately crash into Jupiter's atmosphere and disintegrate. NASA planned the finale so that Juno won't accidentally smack into Jupiter's moons, particularly the icy moon Europa, a target of future exploration.

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Why is the spacecraft solar powered?
Write your answers in the comments section below

  • srinidhir-mac
    10/20/2016 - 12:06 p.m.

    The spacecraft is solar power because there is no electricity
    in space and it helps it shield from Jupiter's harmful radiation.

  • nates-mac
    10/20/2016 - 12:08 p.m.

    The spacecraft is solar powered because there is no electricity in space

  • deliaa-mac
    10/20/2016 - 12:08 p.m.

    The spacecraft is solar powered because there is no electricity in space.

  • immanuella-mac
    10/20/2016 - 12:20 p.m.

    The space craft is solar powered because the spacecraft has no electricity.

    The spacecraft is soloar powered because there is no electricity.

  • christellee-mac
    11/02/2016 - 09:09 a.m.

    I injoyed reading it it was really kind of fun but i liked it.

  • seanm2-bur
    11/09/2016 - 12:55 p.m.

    Juno is solar powered because if it were to run on natural gas, it will take up most of our supply of natural gas. I can relate to this article. I was designing a device last year, and we made it solar powered because we have an unlimited supply of solar energy.

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