From Newcastle to Jupiter

Major news for the European Space Agency (ESA) and Airbus as the Jupiter Icy Moons Explorer (JUICE) spacecraft has officially launched from the spaceport in French Guiana on the Ariane 5 rocket. The successful launch occurred on April 14th.

Spincraft is thrilled to play a part in deep space exploration via our advanced metal forming solutions. The Spincraft UK facility produced domes used to manufacture JUICE’s propellant tank, one of the largest titanium tanks ever built for satellite propulsion systems. Spincraft work entailed the forming, pre-machining and heat treatment of tank domes that were used in both pre-launch ground testing as well as for flight hardware.

JUICE program metal being formed into a fuel tank
Spincraft Dome Forming
Spincraft UK metal forming

JUICE is embarking on an eight-year journey that will arrive at Jupiter in 2031. The mission will observe Jupiter and its largest icy moons: Callisto, Europa and Ganymede. The goal is to monitor, experiment and determine if these environments have conditions that can harbor life.

The JUICE vehicle will travel from Earth to Venus where it will pick up a gravity boost. From there it will make various fly-by passes to Earth as it picks up speed from gravity and moves out from the inner solar system, aided by momentum, on its 500-million-mile journey to Jupiter. It will use the Jovian gravity field to decelerate at the other end. The fuel tank is for smaller maneuvers rather than providing for the main thrust to get to Jupiter.

Spincraft UK JUICE Dome
Finished Fuel Tank Dome

Spincraft is looking forward to following the progress JUICE makes along its journey. Learn more about our capabilities and space systems solutions by clicking Here. Please reach out to our team to discuss how we can solve your most critical metal forming challenges.

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