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NASA Juno Spacecraft Radio

The NASA spacecraft, Juno, is about to complete its 1.8 billion mile journey to Jupiter and go into orbit around the giant planet on July 4. The journey took five years and now Juno will endeavor to understand the origin and evolution of Jupiter, look for a solid planetary core, map the magnetic field, measure water and ammonia in deep atmosphere, and observe auroras.

The Radio

Juno telecom components (Radio Frequency Instrument Subsystem, RFIS) mounted in the Spacecraft vault. (Image courtesy of NASA)

Juno telecom components (Radio Frequency Instrument Subsystem, RFIS) mounted in the Spacecraft vault. (Image courtesy of NASA)

The Juno telecom system operates on the NASA Deep Space Network (DSN) on the X-Band at receive frequency of 7153.065586 MHz and transmit frequency of 8404.135802 MHz. A radio signal would take 48 minutes to travel to or from the spacecraft.

The Antenna

Here are the antenna locations on the Juno spacecraft. (Image courtesy of NASA)

Here are the antenna locations on the Juno spacecraft. (Image courtesy of NASA)

The antennas are:

High-Gain Antenna (HGA) a 2.5-m dual-band (X and Ka) dual reflector

Toroidal Low-Gain Antenna (TLGA) a biconical design operating on the X-Band at receive frequency of 7153.065586 MHz and transmit frequency of 8404.135802 MHz

Medium-Gain Antenna (MGA)

Forward Low-Gain Antenna (FLGA) and Aft Low-Gain Antenna (ALGA)

ET would be able to easily phone home!

9 comments on “NASA Juno Spacecraft Radio

  1. alib10
    June 29, 2016

    Dear Steve

    As a hobisist , If  I want to connect a smaller antenna to a autoguider telescope and be able to direct it and follow Jupiter , what is the chance to get the signal from Juno by making a receiver. Also is it possible to demodulate and encode these signals , especially images. Is there somewhere public what type of signal at DSN

     

  2. Steve Taranovich
    June 29, 2016

    @alib10—I really do not see how you might be able to get a Juno signal. NASA uses their DSN antenna receiver which is huge to receive those signals.

  3. Victor Lorenzo
    July 2, 2016

    Steve, I think it will be interesting if you could cover more on this topic some day.

  4. Steve Taranovich
    July 2, 2016

    Hi Victor,

    It will not take much to convince me to go deeper into the amazing electronics on this Juno spacecraft. I will plan to get more information and possibly interview the Avionics expert at NASA on this program—stay tuned

  5. shirashpar
    July 3, 2016

    nice one great one

  6. rnavarro
    July 8, 2016

    The DSN Telecommunications Design Handbook can be found online by searching for: 810-005 – DSN Telecommunications Link Design Handbook

     

     

     

  7. Steve Taranovich
    July 9, 2016

    @rnavarro—Thanks for your help

  8. Thomas V. Ives
    July 11, 2016

    There is a tremendous amount of information here: descanso.jpl.nasa.gov

    …including the specifications for the Juno radios and antennas listed in this article.  Click “Design & Performance Summary Series” on the right-side menu bar and scroll all the way down to “Article 16 Juno Communications.”

    DESCANSO is the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratories (JPL) Deep Space Communications & Navigation Systems center.  I am not affiliated with the group – I'm just an engineer and space enthusiast who used to work on the Space Shuttle program (Hi USA folks in Houston!).

    Great article and thanks for raising the subject.

  9. alib10
    July 13, 2016

    Thanks Thomas

    This is very useful

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