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Jupiter is one of the most iconic and well-studied planets in our Solar System. Yet, despite centuries of observations and multiple spacecraft visits, the composition of Jupiter's core remains a mystery. A variety of chemical compositions and densities are compatible with existing data, raising questions about whether Jupiter’s core is solid or gaseous. Currently, the Juno spacecraft is learning about the density and structure of Jupiter's core by examining gravitational effects on the spacecraft's orbit. Using a code to simulate Jupiter as a collection of point masses, I with help from professors Gregory Feiden and Thomas Vogel systematically study how different densities, compositions, and structures for Jupiter's core affect Juno's orbit. I hypothesize that Jupiter’s core will be found to be a solid as this seems probable to me for a structure of such great mass and pressure at the center. Once Juno data becomes available, our results can be compared to actual variations in Juno's orbit to constrain Jupiter's core properties. This data can be used to aid in research on the core of planets and how core structure can be important in the study of the formation and origin of planets.


This is a metadata-only record.



  • Subject
    • Physics & Astronomy

  • Institution
    • Dahlonega

  • Event location
    • Nesbitt 3110

  • Event date
    • 23 March 2018

  • Date submitted

    19 July 2022

  • Additional information
    • Acknowledgements:

      Gregory Feiden, Thomas Vogel