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  • Chris Baker


Updated: Apr 13, 2023

The NASA-ESA Mission to Jupiter's Icy Moons is set to launches TODAY!

JUICE MISSION - a search for life.....


The live stream will begin at 12:45 BST, with the launch scheduled for half an hour later at 13:15 BST

Key milestones On launch day the following key milestones will be included in the launch programme and covered by ESA social media channels.

13:15 Juice launch on Ariane 5 13:42 Separation of Juice from Ariane 5 upper stage 13:51 Earliest expected time to acquire Juice’s signal 14:55 Solar array deployment expected to be completed

JUICE WILL LAUNCH on an Ariane 5 from the European Spaceport in Kourou, French Guiana. After a 7 to 8 year cruise to Jupiter, utilizing Earth and Venus gravity assists, JUICE will go into orbit around Jupiter in 2031.

(Don't worry I'll remind you just prior to launch so you can watch it live - and maybe remind you when it arrives in eight years time- God willing!)

The NASA JUpiter ICy moons Explorer (JUICE) mission has the goal of exploring the icy moons of Jupiter, including Europa, Ganymede, and Callisto. JUICE is a collaboration between NASA and the European Space Agency (ESA) and is expected to arrive at Jupiter in 2031.

Jupiter's moons are of great interest to scientists because they are believed to harbour oceans of liquid water beneath their icy surfaces, making them potential targets in the search for life beyond Earth. JUICE will be the first spacecraft to study these moons in detail, providing insights into their composition, geology, and potential habitability.

JUICE will spend at least three years studying Jupiter and its moons, with a focus on three primary objectives: characterizing the moons' geological and geophysical properties, investigating the subsurface oceans and their potential habitability, and studying the interaction between the moons and Jupiter's magnetosphere.

One of the key targets for JUICE is Europa, one of Jupiter's four largest moons and considered one of the most promising places to search for life in our solar system. Europa is believed to have a subsurface ocean twice the size of Earth's oceans, and JUICE will use a suite of instruments to study its composition, geology, and potential habitability.

JUICE will also study Ganymede, the largest moon in the solar system and the only moon with its own magnetic field. Ganymede is believed to have a subsurface ocean as well, and JUICE will study the moon's geology, magnetic field, and the interaction between its subsurface ocean and its icy surface.

Callisto, the third moon JUICE will study, is the most heavily cratered object in the solar system and is believed to have a subsurface ocean as well. JUICE will study Callisto's geology and potential habitability, as well as its interaction with Jupiter's magnetosphere.

JUICE will carry a suite of 10 scientific instruments to study Jupiter and its moons, including cameras, spectrometers, and magnetometers. The spacecraft will also carry a radar instrument capable of studying the subsurface of Europa and Ganymede, providing insights into the composition and thickness of their icy crusts.

In addition to studying Jupiter's moons, JUICE will also study the planet itself, providing new insights into its atmosphere, magnetic field, and auroras. JUICE will also study the interaction between Jupiter's magnetosphere and the moons, providing new insights into the dynamics of the Jovian system.

JUICE will be the first mission to study Jupiter's icy moons in detail, providing new insights into their composition, geology, and potential habitability. The mission represents a major step forward in the search for life beyond Earth, as it will provide new insights into the conditions necessary for life to exist in our solar system and beyond.

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