Powerful Antenna Installed On Europa Clipper
NASA's Europa Clipper spacecraft boasts its new 10-foot (3-meter) high-gain antenna, after its Aug. 14, 2023, installation in High Bay 1 of the Spacecraft Assembly Facility at the agency's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Southern California. The orbiter is being assembled in preparation for launch to Jupiter's moon Europa in October 2024. The precision-engineered dish was attached to the spacecraft in carefully choreographed stages over the course of several hours.
Europa Clipper will need the huge antenna to transmit data hundreds of millions of miles back to Earth. Scientists believe the icy moon Europa harbors a vast internal ocean that may have conditions suitable for supporting life. The spacecraft will fly by the moon about 50 times while its science instruments gather data on the moon's atmosphere, surface, and interior – information that will help scientists learn more about the ocean, the ice crust, and potential plumes that may be venting subsurface water into space.
For more information about Europa and Europa Clipper, go to: europa.nasa.gov