Rocket engines manufactured in Canoga Park by Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne powered the Juno spacecraft on its launch to study the plant Jupiter.
The RD-180 booster engine was used on Atlas V rocket, and the upper stage was powered by the RL10 engine. The rocket launched Aug. 5 from the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida.
“Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne is honored to provide NASA with the propulsion required to launch this important satellite on its deep-space mission to study the planet,” said Jim Maus, director, hypersonic and expendable propulsion programs, Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne.
The Juno mission spacecraft will orbit around Jupiter for one year to study its atmosphere to measure composition, temperature, cloud motions and other properties.
The spacecraft will also map the planet’s magnetic and gravity fields, and explore its poles to gain insight into the planet’s enormous magnetic force field on its atmosphere.