A new NASA-led mission to investigate the solar system’s mysterious solar system objects will be launched on Thursday, the agency announced.
The Juno spacecraft is the first spacecraft designed specifically for exploring the solar wind, the invisible force that pervades all our lives.
The spacecraft will orbit the sun from the Earth, taking measurements of the solar winds and its influence on our planet.
The mission is designed to collect samples from the solar corona, a vast region of interstellar gas and dust that forms the nucleus of our sun and the solar systems largest planet, Jupiter.
Juno will study the corona for more than 40 days, collecting the most precise and detailed measurements yet of the cosmic rays, charged particles, and radiation from the sun that we see daily.
The mission is a partnership between NASA and the European Space Agency.
Juno was designed to study the solar environment in the same way that we study the sun’s atmosphere, by looking for particles of the charged particles and radiation it produces.
The instruments Juno will use will include a radar to measure the strength of solar wind particles, a radio telescope to probe the coronal mass ejection (CME) event that produced the sun, and an X-ray spectrometer to search for the presence of water vapor in the solar atmosphere.
The X-rays are the same rays we see when the sun is in its dying phase.
“Juno will take the first steps toward understanding the solar history and its effects on our universe,” said John Grunsfeld, director of NASA’s Science Mission Directorate, in a statement.
“We have seen what happens when the Sun’s magnetic field is disrupted.
But we have not seen what can happen when the magnetic field gets disrupted when the solar surface is destroyed.
The Juno mission will bring new insights into the solar processes that lead to our universe and beyond.”NASA and the Japanese Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) will jointly develop and fly Juno for NASA in 2017.
Juno is designed for a mission length of up to about 20 months.NASA hopes to send the spacecraft into the sun in 2021 and to return it in 2023.
The space agency will send the mission’s first robotic arm, called the MAVEN spacecraft, to the sun at the end of that time frame.
The arm will bring a robotic arm called MAVEN-1 to the solar interior and be deployed on the moon.
Juno’s instruments will collect images of the sun with a resolution of between a few hundred and a few thousand meters per pixel.
The MAVEN mission is the result of decades of collaboration between NASA, the European Union, and Japan.
It is the only spacecraft mission to fly beyond the solar neighborhood and study the outer reaches of the Solar System.
It will be the first robotic mission to reach beyond the sun and look at the inner solar system and beyond.