NASA has chosen SpaceX’s Falcon Heavy to launch the Europa Clipper, the primary mission to conduct detailed reconnaissance of the Jovian moon. [credit: Trevor Mahlmann ]
After years of hypothesis, NASA formally introduced Friday that SpaceX’s Falcon Heavy would launch what’s arguably the area company’s most essential Photo voltaic System exploration mission of the 2020s—the Europa Clipper.
Slated to launch in October 2024, the $4.25 billion mission will spend a lot of the rest of this decade flying to the Jovian system earlier than getting into an elongated orbit round Jupiter. The spacecraft will then make as many as 44 flybys of Europa, the intriguing, ice-encrusted Jovian moon that scientists imagine harbors an enormous ocean beneath the floor. It’s potential that aquatic life exists there.
The full contract award quantity for launch companies is roughly $178 million, NASA mentioned in a information launch. It is a important second for SpaceX, as the corporate will likely be entrusted with one in all NASA’s highest-priority exploration missions. The deal additionally saves NASA about $2 billion.
Learn 7 remaining paragraphs | Feedback