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Galileo (spacecraft) facts for kids

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Artwork Galileo-Io-Jupiter.JPG
Artist's concept of Galileo at Io with Jupiter in the background; the high-gain antenna is fully deployed
Names Jupiter Orbiter Probe
Mission type Jupiter orbiter
Operator NASA
Mission duration
  • Planned: 8 years, 1 month, 19 days
  • In orbit: 7 years, 9 months, 13 days
  • Final: 13 years, 11 months, 3 days
Distance travelled 4,631,778,000 km (2.88 billion mi)
Spacecraft properties
Launch mass
  • Total: 2,562 kg (5,648 lb)
  • Orbiter: 2,223 kg (4,901 lb)
  • Probe: 339 kg (747 lb)
Dry mass
  • Orbiter: 1,884 kg (4,154 lb)
  • Probe: 339 kg (747 lb)
Payload mass
  • Orbiter: 118 kg (260 lb)
  • Probe: 30 kg (66 lb)
  • Orbiter: 570 watts
  • Probe: 730 watt-hours
Start of mission
Launch date October 18, 1989, 16:53:40 (1989-10-18UTC16:53:40) UTC
Rocket Space Shuttle Atlantis
STS-34 / IUS
Launch site Kennedy LC-39B
Entered service December 8, 1995, 01:16 UTC SCET
End of mission
Disposal Controlled entry into Jupiter
Decay date September 21, 2003, 18:57:18 (2003-09-21UTC18:57:19) GMT SCET;
September 21, 2003, 19:49:36 (2003-09-21UTC19:49:37) GMT ERT
Jupiter orbiter
Spacecraft component Orbiter
Orbital insertion December 8, 1995, 01:16 UTC SCET
Jupiter atmospheric probe
Spacecraft component Probe
Atmospheric entry December 7, 1995, 22:04 UTC SCET
Impact site 06°05′N 04°04′W / 6.083°N 4.067°W / 6.083; -4.067 (Galileo Probe)
at entry interface
Galileo mission patch.png
NASA Flagship Program
Cassini–Huygens →

Galileo was an unmanned NASA spacecraft. It explored the planet Jupiter and its moons. Galileo was launched in 1989 and it arrived at Jupiter in 1995.

Galileo was made up of two parts: an orbiter and a probe. The probe was released from the orbiter on July 13, 1995 and it went towards Jupiter. It reached Jupiter on December 7, 1995 and went down into the atmosphere. The probe gathered data for 57 minutes until the great atmospheric heat and pressure destroyed it.

The orbiter went into orbit around the planet on December 8, 1995 and went down into Jupiter's atmosphere and was crushed on September 21, 2003.

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Galileo (spacecraft) Facts for Kids. Kiddle Encyclopedia.