The National Aeronautics and Space Administration’s (NASA) Juno spacecraft flew past Jupiter’s ice-encrusted moon Ganymede on June 7, which was closer than any spacecraft in more than two decades. Now, the Juno mission team has put together the view captured by the spacecraft and other such visuals that feature Juno’s 34th flyby of Jupiter racing over its roiling atmosphere from one pole to another, to provide a “starship captain” point of view of each flyby.
In an Instagram post shared by NASA Solar System on Friday, netizens can catch a glimpse of the spectacular visuals captured by Juno of the giant planet. The animation for the four-minute-long video was done by Koji Kuramura, Gerald Eichstädt, and Mike Stetson. Accompanying the majestic views is the music by Greek musician Vangelis. The video is produced by Scott J. Bolton. In its caption, NASA Solar System mentioned that to create the video, “actual JunoCam images were projected onto a digital sphere. Synthetic frames were added to provide views of approach and departure for both Ganymede and Jupiter.”
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In a press release by NASA, Bolton — who also happens to be the principal investigator for Juno from the Southwest Research Institute in San Antonio -said that the animation is a way for people to imagine how exploring the solar system first-hand feels like and what it would be like to be orbiting Jupiter and flying past one of its icy moons. He further mentioned that the video comes at a time when space exploration has witnessed a growth and people have more opportunities to explore what lies outside planet Earth.
This video, Bolton said, would propel the imagination “decades into the future, when humans will be visiting the alien worlds in our solar system.”Explaining the animation, NASA said in its statement that the team used composite images of Ganymede and Jupiter to generate the camera’s point of view for this time-lapse animation. JunoCam images were orthographically projected onto a digital sphere for both worlds featured in the video and used to create the flyby animation.