After launching in 2011, NASA’s Juno spacecraft is finally going to arrive at Jupiter and enter orbit around the mysterious planet. The event won’t actually be happening until later this evening, and you can watch it live at our link here. We have the schedule of events below for the Juno spacecraft, so you can know exactly what is happening and when.
Here’s what you need to know.
Although broadcasts for Juno will start earlier, the big moment for the Juno spacecraft will be happening at approximately 11:18 p.m. Eastern, when Juno’s 35-minute main engine burn to enter Jupiter’s orbit begins. The capture into orbit is expected to happen at 11:38 p.m. Eastern.
Here’s the exact schedule, as shared on Planetary Society by Emily Lakdawalla. All times are Eastern:
- Pre-orbit insertion briefing: Noon
- Tones begin transmitting: 9:13 p.m.
- First turn of 15 degrees away from the sun, toward orbit insertion: 9:16 p.m.
- Begin fast, large turn toward orbit insertion: 10:28 p.m.
- NASA’s live broadcast begins: 10:30 p.m.
- Switch to the toroidal low gain antenna: 10:41 p.m.
- Begin damping activity to remove wobble: 10:45 p.m.
- Begin fine-tuning of orbit insertion attitude: 10:50 p.m.
- Begin five-minute spin-up from two to five rotations per minute: 10:56 p.m.
- Jupiter orbit insertion burn begins: 11:18 p.m.
- Begin 35-minute main engine burn (slowing down to enter orbit): 11:18 p.m.
- Capture into Jupiter orbit should be achieved by 11:38 p.m.
- Jupiter insertion orbit burn ends: 11:53 p.m.
- Close propulsion pressurant valves and end burn: 11:53 p.m.
- Begin five-minute spin-down from five to 2 rotations per minute: 11:55 p.m.
- Begin turning to sun-pointed attitude: 12:07 a.m.
- Switch telecom to medium gain antenna: 12:11 a.m.
- Begin transmitting telemetry (it might take 20 minutes or more to lock onto the signal): 12:16 a.m.
- Post-orbit insertion briefing from NASA (watch it live here): 1 a.m.
- Capture orbit phase ends: 1:48 a.m.
Lakdawalla, who provided the schedule above via Planetary Society, will also be on Twitter live tweeting the event at this link.
Learn a little bit more about what Juno will be exploring here: