"Best known as a swan winging its way across the night, the constellation Cygnus is easily seen in the northern hemisphere's summertime sky. This new view of the Cygnus-X star-forming region by the Herschel Telescope highlights chaotic networks of dust and gas that point to sites of massive star formation. This image combines far-infrared data acquired at 70 micron (corresponding to the blue channel); 160 micron (corresponding to the green channel); and 250 micron (corresponding to the red channel). The observations were made on May 24, 2010, and Dec. 18, 2010.
Herschel is a European Space Agency cornerstone mission, with science instruments provided by consortia of European institutes and with important participation by NASA."
From the volatile landscape of Io, pockmarked by eons of volcanic activity, to Ganymede’s saltwater oceans sandwiched between hundreds of miles of ice and rock, Jupiter’s so-called Galilean moons are uniquely diverse and act like a miniature solar system.
“Jupiter is an archetype of gas giants,” says Werner Magnes from the Space Research Institute at the Austrian Academy of Sciences in Graz, Austria. “It’s a kind of mini-solar system, which means Jupiter acts like a star in a minisystem with its moons acting like planets.”
That’s why the European Space Agency chose the distant gas giant’s icy moons as the target of its next big scientific mission. The 19-member group opted this month to send a spacecraft to explore and investigate the satellites, which are located some 500 million miles away from Earth. The plan is to launch the Jupiter Icy Moons Explorer, or JUICE, in 2022.
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July 19thAtlas V launch of US DOD MUOS-2 satellite, notable for large "551" config of Atlas
Aug 3rdJapanese HTV-4 flight to ISS on cargo supply mission
Aug 14thSpaceX launch of Canadian satellite in the first launch from their new Vandenberg facility, and first launch of upgraded Falcon 9 v1.1 launch vehicle
Aug 28thDelta IV Heavy launch of NROL-65 spy satellite
SeptemberSoyuz TMA-08M flight returning Expedition 36 crew from ISS to Earth (Kazakhstan)
Sept 12thOrbital Sciences maiden flight of Cygnus cargo vehicle on Antares rocket to ISS
Sept 25thSoyuz TMA-10M flight launching Expedition 38 crew to ISS
Dec 9thSpaceX Dragon launch by Falcon 9 v1.1 on CRS-3 cargo supply mission to ISS
recurringfirst powered test flights of Scaled Composites' SpaceShipTwo commercial vehicle, to be used by Virgin Galactic for sub-orbital tourism