JUICE: Searching for life on Jupiter’s icy moons
Very soon, the Jupiter Icy Moon Explorer vehicle is being sent by the European Space Agency for critical explorations of Jupiter’s satellites. Jupiter Icy Moon Explorer is abbreviated as JUICE.
Jupiter Icy Moon Explorer(JUICE)
- It is an interplanetary spacecraft, developed by the European Space Agency.
- Airbus Defense and Space Company has taken contract for this mission. The company is the second largest space company in the world after Boeing.
- The main purpose of the mission is to study the three Galilean moons or satellites of Jupiter.These three moons are Europa, Ganymede and Callisto.
- It is to be noted that in the year 1610, four big moons of Jupiter were discovered by Galileo, namely, Europa, Ganymede, Io and Callisto.
- It is believed that abundant water is available under the surface of these three moons, which this vehicle will study.
- This spacecraft will be launched in June 2022 for these satellites of Jupiter, which will reach Jupiter in October During this time, the vehicle will reach Jupiter via gravity assists.
- It is to be known that the gravity aid of another planet or astronomical object is used to increase the speed of a spacecraft or to change its path. This is done to save the propellant and reduce expenses.
Other objectives of this mission:
- Massive discovery of Ganymede and evaluating the potential for life on these moons.
- Analyzing ocean layers.
- Mapping of the geological and topographical structure of the surface.
- Study of physical properties of icy crust.
- Investigation of Ganymede’s environment. Studies about its magnetic field.
Source – The Hindu