NASA’s Juno spacecraft reveals 1st image of Jupiter’s moon Europa

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LOS ANGELES (AP) — NASA’s (National Aeronautics and Space Administration) Juno spacecraft captured the first image of Jupiter’s ice-encrusted moon Europa while flying by.

The photo was taken on Thursday during the solar-powered spacecraft’s closest approach at a distance of about 352 kilometers.

According to NASA, this is only the third near approach below 500 kilometers altitude in history, and the closest look any spacecraft has provided at Europa since Jan. 3, 2000, when NASA’s Galileo got within 351 kilometers of the surface.

The icy surface of Jupiter’s moon Europa was photographed by NASA’s Juno spacecraft during a flyby on September 29, 2022.

Europa is the solar system’s sixth-largest moon, somewhat smaller than Earth’s moon.

Scientists believe a salty ocean exists beneath Europa’s miles-thick ice cover, raising concerns about potential conditions capable of supporting life beneath Europa’s surface.

Source: Xinhua

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