Ganymede is one of Jupiter’s moons and is a very cool celestial body. Not just because it is The largest moon in our solar system, even larger than Mercury and the dwarf planet Pluto, but also because NASA found evidence of an underground ocean of salt water there. How long does it take to get there then?
Let’s start by saying that Ganymede is located about 1 million km from Jupiter, which in turn orbits about 778 million km from the Sun. 5 AU from the Sunwhich (abbreviated to AUWe remember that we are the distance between the Earth and our star.
From this distance, if we travel at the speed of light, the light will take us Just over 30 minutes to access the Jovian system and thus Ganymede. If instead we want to try to act in more “realistic” and current means?
In this case, we will be helped by some previous space missions that flew over the satellite before reaching Jupiter and got very different results depending on the purpose of the flight. For example, the first space probe to reach the gas giant system was pioneer 10 NASA that departed on March 3, 1972 and reached its destination on December 3, 1973, After 640 days of the triphowever, crossing it at a maximum speed of more than 130,000 km.
Later, in 1995, also investigated Galileo It reached the Jovian system, to enter into orbit around the gas giant after Ben 2242 travel daysand made several flyovers at Ganymede, just 264 km from its surface, providing us with a more realistic assessment of times that would require a flight that would allow us to slow down, get closer and observe the moon.
In addition, we will be able to obtain more accurate (travel) data thanks to the mission Jupiter Ice Explorer satellites From the European Space Agency, with launch date Scheduled in 2023which will study Ganymede (and two other Jovian satellites) and will be the first probe to enter the satellite’s orbit.
Out of curiosity, in mythology, Ganymede was a beautiful boy who was brought to Olympus by Jupiter disguised as an eagle, and later became the butler of the gods.
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