NASA Home Sitemap
+
+
+
Solar System Exploration Missions
SSE Home > Missions > By Target > Jupiter > Past > Galileo
Search
Solar System Exploration Home
News and Events
Planets
Missions
By Target
Science and Technology
Multimedia
People
Kids
Education
History
Past Missions to Jupiter Future Missions to Jupiter
Missions to Jupiter
Galileo
Galileo Mission to Venus Galileo Mission to Earth Galileo Mission to Asteroids Galileo Mission to Comets Galileo Mission to Jupiter
Galileo:
Liked the famed astronomer for which it was named, Galileo spacecraft logged quite a few firsts during its 14-year mission to Jupiter. Among its discoveries: an intense radiation belt above Jupiter's cloud tops, helium in about the same concentration as the sun, extensive and rapid resurfacing of the moon Io because of volcanism, and evidence for liquid water oceans under the moon Europa's icy surface.

The orbiter carried a small probe that became the first to sample the atmosphere of a gas planet. The probe measured temperature, pressure, chemical composition, cloud characteristics, sunlight and energy internal to the planet, and lightning. During its 58-minute life, the probe penetrated 200 km (124 miles) into Jupiter's violent atmosphere before it was crushed, melted, and/or vaporized by the pressure and temperature of the atmosphere.

Galileo was deliberately crashed into Jupiter in September 2003 to avoid an accidental collision with - and possible contamination of - one of Jupiter's moons.

Read More About Galileo

Key Dates Headlines
10.18.89: 
Launch (16:53:40 UT)
12.07.95: 
Probe Descent (22:04 UT - 23:02 UT)
09.21.03: 
Jupiter Impact (18:57:18 UT)
Status: 
Mission Complete
Fast Facts Links
Galileo Facts Galileo was launched from the Space Shuttle Atlantis.

The spacecraft traveled more than 4.6 billion km (about 2.8 billion miles) during its 14-year mission.

Galileo was named in honor of Galileo Galilei (above), who discovered the largest moons of Jupiter in 1610.
Explore more of NASA on the Web:
Go!
Go!
FirstGov - Your First Click to the U.S. Government
+
+
+
+
+
+
NASA Home Page
Curator: Phil Davis
Webmaster: David Martin
NASA Official: Orlando Figueroa
Last Updated: 09 December 2003
+
+
+