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Life and Giant Planets
JIMO image
08/30/11

 

The Jupiter Icy Moons Orbiter (JIMO) was a proposed mission to orbit three of the Galilean satellites, Europa, Ganymede, and Callisto, which may have subsurface oceans and possibly the ingredients for life. The spacecraft will be launched by a conventional chemical rocket, but once in space will be driven by an ion propulsion system. The system consists of electric thrusters powered by a small nuclear reactor.

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