SpaceX is going to Jupiter after being selected by NASA for the Europa Clipper mission, using the Falcon Heavy, and would look for indications if it is suitable for life. Instead of NASA's focus on Mars, it is moving to the next planet's moon, the Europa which could be a potential new place to live in. The lunar surface has oceans twice the size of Earth's.
With NASA's Juno surveying and taking a photo of the different moons and elements of Jupiter, it would soon come to the gas giant and look at another moon for its possibility to harbor life from Earth.
SpaceX is Going to Jupiter
In the recent tweet by SpaceX (@SpaceX), a mission that is two years in the making was awarded to them, and they have been selected by the country's space agency to lead this mission. Here, the company would use their resources for the venture, particularly its "Falcon Heavy" spacecraft which would resemble more of the Falcon 9.
This mission is called the "Europa Clipper," and SpaceX would bring a payload of the Europa Clipper orbiter aboard the Falcon. This would be a different version of the Falcon spacecraft, as it would be more "heavy-duty," enough for its rigorous and lengthy trip towards the gas giant to sustain all possible situations.
The mission would be launching in October 2024, and it would bring humans closer to Jupiter than ever, as it would survey and determine if this would be an ideal next destination for life.
NASA Europa Clipper
On this mission, NASA is featuring the Europa Clipper, going aboard the Falcon Heavy, and having it brought to Jupiter's moon which is believed to be suitable to sustain life on its surface. Why is that? The moon was said to have an ocean that is twice as big as the Earth's, meaning that it has bodies of water.
One of the many variables NASA is considering for a planet to be habitable by humans is to have a source of water, next is oxygen, and land for humans to walk or build structures on. Other variables like toxic elements would also be massive considerations before saying that it is habitable.
It would take a long time to get to Jupiter, which is 612.82 million kilometers away from the Earth. That would take roughly 550 to 650 days of travel time, which is almost two years of seeing nothing but deep space.
Europa Clipper vs. Artemis Moon Mission
Europa Clipper is like the Artemis Moon Mission, as both are probes of natural satellites of planets in the Solar System. The difference and similarities are massive, as both also aims to look for signs of water. However, the Artemis Moon mission would be closer to the planet and would be something of a return mission to continue what the Apollo has started.
On the other hand, the Europa Clipper is more of a survey, with no humans aboard the spacecraft. Here, NASA would be "testing waters" and look for the possibility of humans to thrive on the surface, millions of kilometers away from home.
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Written by Isaiah Richard