The Jupiter, the largest planet in the solar system is around 365 million miles from Earth has been in the expedition by NASA’s Juno spacecraft. The spacecraft was locked into Jupiter’s orbit on July 4 beginning its mission around the planet for 20 months. After the probe arriving at Jupiter’s orbit, NASA on Sunday flipped the electronic photographer, Junocam and started snapping pictures. NASA on Tuesday released the first images taken by the satellite that even shows great red spot.
“We’re quite pleased that we survived going through Jupiter orbit insertion,” said Candice Hansen-Koharcheck, a scientist at Planetary Science Institute in Tucson who is responsible for the operation of the camera. “The fact it’s a beautiful image is already a good thing.”
The photo was taken from a distance of 2.7 million miles from the planet which shows distinct features like the infamous Great Red Spot and three of Jupiter’s largest moons — (left to right) Io, Europa and Ganymede. The image that was received is proof that the probe made it through the planet’s extreme radiation and remains unharmed. Juno begins its 53-day orbit and it will be taking four pictures an hour. In its entire mission, Juno will circle the planet 37 times taking photos of the planet’s poles and dramatic auroras. According to NASA, on its closest passes, Juno will be about 2,600 miles on the planet, allowing it to probe beneath the cloud cover to “learn more about the planet’s origins, structure, atmosphere, and magnetosphere.”
Though the photo looks fuzzy, NASA says high-resolution images are still a few weeks away. The spacecraft also captured a time lapse video of the planets’ moon over a two-week period time in June starting around 10 million miles away from the planet and ending about 3 million miles away.