Galileo spacecraft

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About Galileo spacecraft

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Galileo was an unmanned NASA spacecraft which studied the planet Jupiter and its moons. Named after the Renaissance astronomer Galileo Galilei, it was launched on October 18, 1989, by the Space Shuttle Atlantis on the STS-34 mission. Galileo arrived at Jupiter on December 7, 1995, via gravitational assist flybys of Venus and Earth, becoming the first spacecraft to orbit Jupiter. Despite suffering from antenna problems, Galileo conducted the first asteroid flyby near 951 Gaspra and discovered the first asteroid moon, Dactyl, around the asteroid 243 Ida. It furthermore launched the first probe into Jupiter's atmosphere. The mission's total cost was estimated at approximately US$1.4 billion. The spacecraft measured the atmospheric composition of Jupiter and directly observed ammonia clouds, which seem to be created by an outflow from the lower depths of Jupiter's atmosphere. Galileo also registered Io's volcanism and the plasma interactions between its and Jupiter's atmospheres. Other data gave support for the popular theory of a liquid ocean under the icy surface of Europa. There were furthermore indications of similar liquid-saltwater layers under the surfaces of Ganymede and

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