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NASA's Juno closes in on Jupiter

Thursday, June 30, 2016 - 01:08

After a five-year journey, NASA's Juno spacecraft will reach Jupiter's atmosphere on July 4th. Rough Cut (no reporter narration).

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ROUGH CUT (NO REPORTER NARRATION) NASA's Juno spacecraft is closing in on Jupiter. The robotic explorer is due to reach the planet on July 4th. But not before some tense moments for scientists. The spacecraft will be switched into autopilot as it approaches and will have a 35-minute burn it needs to complete. To prepare Juno for Jupiter's extreme climate, scientists created a box made up of 400 pounds of titanium to protect the scientific instruments, computers and electronics onboard. Juno is due to spend a year in an unprecedented polar orbit around Jupiter, measuring the planet's water content, mapping its magnetic fields and searching for signs of a solid core. With more than twice the mass of all its sibling planets combined, Jupiter is believed to hold a key piece to the puzzle of how the planets formed some 4.65 billion years ago from the gas and dust left over after the birth of the sun.

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NASA's Juno closes in on Jupiter

Thursday, June 30, 2016 - 01:08