Tag Archives: juno

Tracking Juno: Here it comes and there it goes

A pair of photos of ESA's Malargue station that perfectly illustrate how the Agency's tracking efforts progressed last night. At left, the huge 35m dish antenna is pointing more or less straight up as Juno approached Earth high above Argentina. Of course, Earth rotates, so the antenna had to be continuously tracked down and rotated. At right, finally, as Juno dipped out of line-of-sight below the horizon, the station lost contact with the spacecraft with the antenna pointed low toward the East. The craft continued en route to make closest approach above S. Africa a few minutes after the right-hand image was taken.

Juno flyby seen from South Africa

Last night, Greg Roberts, of Pinelands, Cape Town, South Africa, was a very busy chap! Greg obtained a series of excellent images of NASA's Juno spacecraft just before it made closest approach (CA) during Earth flyby; CA came at 19:21 UTC. The Jupiter probe whizzed past Earth at just 561km - lower than many Earth observation satellites and low enough to experience a tiny drag due to atmospheric friction. Greg's images were acquired in the few minutes before CA. After sending them off to NASA, he kindly agreed to share his photos with the Rocket Science blog, and we're delighted to present them here. Greg wrote: I got 23 images in all...

#AOS by ESA’s Perth station

ESA's 15m tracking station at Perth, Australia, has acquired signals from NASA's Juno and is now following the mission's progress until about 23:45 CEST.

Closest approach!

Closest approach: passage at 21:21 CEST CLOSEST APPROACH - #Juno is now 559 Kilometers above the ocean, 200km from the southeastern coast of South Africa. pic.twitter.com/ftfDSyj7fZ — NASA Juno (@Juno_101) October 9, 2013

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Bill Nye explains Juno’s Earth flyby

Your favourite science guy: In this episode of the web series 'Why With Nye', legendary educator Bill Nye gives you the inside scoop on NASA Juno's historic Earth flyby. On 9 October 2013, Juno will use Earth's gravity to sling-shot itself all the way to Jupiter.

Estrack control room at ESOC

And a simple picture showing how we provide our NASA/JPL colleagues with updates on how our Juno tracking is progressing: you can see a small webcam set up to point at the console display showing the signal being received via Malargue (and, later, Perth) ground station. The NASA colleagues imply log in to the webcam and see, in real time, exactly what we see. ESA engineer John Reynolds, at #ESOC, on the voice loop w/Malargue station while monitoring #junoflyby pic.twitter.com/HvqzLSQ4Ue — ESA Operations (@esaoperations) October 9, 2013

First Junocam image of Earth today

NASA's Juno now 140,818 km from Earth! First JunoCam image of the day! Taken at 11:07 UTC when #Juno was 206,000 Kilometers from the Moon (via MSSS) - pic.twitter.com/86amdfgF6X — NASA Juno (@Juno_101) October 9, 2013