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Formation of the Solar System: Birth of Worlds
Featured Missions

Deep Impact-EPOXI
Illustration of the Deep Impact Spacecraft
The Deep Impact spacecraft studied two comets.

On November 4, 2010, the EPOXI mission flew past Comet Hartley 2. EPOXI, the former Deep Impact flyby spacecraft, is comprised of two projects with different scientific objectives. DIXI, the Deep Impact Extended Investigation, continued the Deep Impact theme of studying comets by flying past Comet Hartley 2. EPOCh, Extrasolar Planet Observation and Characterization, used the Deep Impact high-resolution instrument to observe stars with known transiting giant planets to characterize those planets and to search for others.

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Color illustration of Juno at Jupiter.
Juno is NASA's next mission to Jupiter, our solar system's largest planet.

Juno, launched in August 2011, will improve our understanding of our solar system's beginnings by revealing the origin and evolution of Jupiter. With its suite of science instruments, Juno will investigate the existence of a solid planetary core, map Jupiter's intense magnetic field, measure the amount of water and ammonia in the deep atmosphere, and observe the planet's auroras. Juno will let us take a giant step forward in our understanding of how giant planets form and the role these titans played in putting together the rest of the solar system.

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Last Updated: 12 Sep 2014