Good morning, Earthlings!
Some of you may have heard about the successful Juno mission! A little bit about Juno- it launched in August 2011 and arrived at Jupiter in July 2016. It's mission is to observe Jupiter in the aspects of its magnetic field, auroras, water and ammonia in the very turbulent atmosphere, and signs of a possible solid planetary core!
The Juno payload has instruments ranging from the radio wavelengths to ultraviolet imagers for as full of a spectral reading on what is happening on Jupiter as we can get!
Here are some questions that we hope to answer with Juno:
1.) Does Jupiter have a heavy metal core?
2.) How deep is the Red Spot and other bands?
3.) What is the abundance of water on Jupiter?
4.) How did Jupiter get enriched in heavy elements compared with the Sun?
5.) How and where did the magnetic field originate?
6.) What causes the auroras?
7.) How does the interior of Jupiter rotate?
Meanwhile, here is a quick update about the Pluto Chamber in the lab. We have been getting a full range of mixtures at the ready involving methane, nitrogen, and carbon monoxide. A pre-mixing chamber has been built, which will help us create the mixtures of gas we want. We have a camera set-up within the chamber that will soon be looked into for visual confirmations of the kinds of ice we make! Plans for an additional platform in the chamber are underway to take place in the Fall. More updates later!
Keep cool and see you next week when I will post about Io- a very volcanic moon of Jupiter!