ESA tests 7 out of 10 science instruments of the JUICE mission

ESA specialists have successfully tested the operability of 7 out of 10 science instruments of the JUICE spacecraft. This was reported by the mission support group in response to a request from The Universe Space Tech editorial office.

The JUICE spacecraft was launched on April 14, 2023. The purpose of its mission is Europa, Callisto and Ganymede — the three largest icy moons of Jupiter, under the surfaces of which huge oceans are hidden. JUICE will study these worlds, which will allow scientists to conduct a basic assessment of their potential viability.

The scientific instruments of the JUICE mission. Source: ESA

Shortly after the launch, ESA reported disturbing news: JUICE failed to deploy the RIME radar antenna. Since it was with the help of this instrument that the probe was supposed to scan the interior of the moons of Jupiter, its loss would be a big blow to the mission. Fortunately, later ESA engineers managed to deploy the antenna.

But RIME is not the only instrument on board JUICE. In total, the probe carries ten scientific instruments. Currently, ESA engineers are busy checking their operability and calibration. So, recently they turned on the MAJIS infrared spectrometer. Its images will help scientists study the structure of Jupiter’s cloud cover and determine the chemical composition of the surface of its moons. The test has shown that MAJIS works as expected. A test photo taken by the JANUS camera was also published. On it you can see the star η Cygnus.

In total, at the moment, engineers have already made sure that 7 out of 10 JUICE science instruments are working. The rest of the instruments are in the process of being checked. The mission support group announced this on its Twitter account in response to a corresponding request from our editorial office.

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