Jupiter antenna that came in from the cold
by Staff Writers
Paris (ESA) May 31, 2021
An instrument destined for Jupiter orbit is checked after completing eight days of cryogenic radio-frequency testing at ESA's ESTEC technical centre in the Netherlands.
The Sub-millimetre Wave Instrument of ESA's Juice mission will survey the churning atmosphere of Jupiter and the scanty atmospheres of its Galilean moons.
Testing took place in ESA's custom-built Low-temperature Near-field Terahertz chamber, or Lorentz.
The first chamber of its kind, the 2.8-m diameter Lorentz chamber can perform high-frequency radio-frequency testing in realistic space conditions, combining space-quality vacuum with ultra-low temperatures.
"The successful test of the flight hardware inside Lorentz, follows an intensive commissioning phase." says ESA antenna engineer Paul Moseley. "This demonstration opens up a wide range of testing possibilities for missions to come."
Meanwhile the flight model of the SWI instrument's parent Juice spacecraft has itself reached the ESTEC Test Centre, in preparation for a month long thermal vacuum test campaign.
Europa's interior may be hot enough to fuel seafloor volcanoes
Pasadena CA (JPL) May 27, 2021
New research and computer modeling show that volcanic activity may have occurred on the seafloor of Jupiter's moon Europa in the recent past - and may still be happening. NASA's upcoming Europa Clipper mission, targeting a 2024 launch, will swoop close to the icy moon and collect measurements that may shed light on the recent findings. Scientists have strong evidence that Europa harbors an enormous ocean between its icy crust and rocky interior. The new work shows how the moon may have enough inte ... read more
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