Photo: Earth from Juno
On Oct. 9, Juno flew by Earth usingthe home planet’s gravity to get a boost needed to reach Jupiter. The JunoCam caught this image of Earth, and other instruments were tested to ensure they work as designed during a close planetary encounter.
The Juno spacecraft was launched from NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida on August 5, 2011. Juno’s rocket, the Atlas 551, was only capable of giving Juno enough energy or speed to reach the asteroid belt, at which point the Sun’s gravity pulled Juno back toward the inner solar system. The Earth flyby gravity assist increases the spacecraft’s speed to put it on course for arrival at Jupiter on July 4, 2016.

Photo: Earth from Juno

On Oct. 9, Juno flew by Earth usingthe home planet’s gravity to get a boost needed to reach Jupiter. The JunoCam caught this image of Earth, and other instruments were tested to ensure they work as designed during a close planetary encounter.

The Juno spacecraft was launched from NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida on August 5, 2011. Juno’s rocket, the Atlas 551, was only capable of giving Juno enough energy or speed to reach the asteroid belt, at which point the Sun’s gravity pulled Juno back toward the inner solar system. The Earth flyby gravity assist increases the spacecraft’s speed to put it on course for arrival at Jupiter on July 4, 2016.

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    So, in short, NASA spent billions of dollars… to make a giant slingshot. I am okay with this.
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    Science
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