NASA’s Juno spacecraft has captured some curious noises coming from Ganymede, Jupiter’s largest moon.  

The 50-second audio track has been generated from data collected during Juno’s flyby of Ganymede on June 7 this year, NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory revealed.  

It is a bizarre series of beeps at different frequencies, coming from Ganymede (the largest moon in our solar systems and only one with its own magnet field).

Ganymede’s diameter is 3,280 miles (5.262 kilometers). It is bigger than Pluto and Mercury.  

This image of Ganymede was obtained by the JunoCam imager aboard NASA's Juno spacecraft during its June 7 flyby of the icy moon

The JunoCam imaging unit aboard NASA’s Juno spacecraft captured this image of Ganymede during its Jun 7 orbit of the icy moon.


Ganymede was discovered in January 1610. Since then, it has been subject to repeated observations, initially by Earth-based telescopes and later, by flyby missions or spacecraft orbiting Jupiter.

These illustrations depict a complex, icy planet whose surface is marked by striking contrast between the two types of terrain – the very older and highly cratered dark regions, as well as the more recent and less heavily ridged regions.

Ganymede’s diameter is 3,280 miles (5.262 km), which makes it larger than Pluto and Mercury.

This satellite is also known to be the only one in the solar system with its own magnetosphere. 

It was Ganymede’s closest spacecraft approach to Ganymede since May 2000, when NASA’s Galileo spacecraft came within a hair of Ganymede. 

“This music is wild enough that it makes you feel like you’re riding with Juno as she passes Ganymede, for the first-time in over two decades,” Scott Bolton, Juno principal investigator at the Southwest Research Institute (San Antonio) said. 

Listen closely to the recording and you’ll notice the sudden change in frequency at the midpoint. This indicates that you have entered a new area of Ganymede’s magnetosphere. 

Juno, which launched from Cape Canaveral, Florida in August 2011 to study Jupiter from orbit, arrived at Jupiter on July 4, 2016, after a five-year journey. 

The spacecraft came close to Ganymede in June 2021. This marked the closest that a spacecraft had come to the Moon since Galileo was May 2000.

At the time of this approach – during the mission’s 34th trip around Jupiter – the rotating, solar-powered spacecraft was within 645 miles (1,038 km) of the moon’s surface and travelling at a relative velocity of 41,600 mph (67,000 kph). 

Juno’s Waves instrument collected the data for the audio. It tunes into magnetic and electric radio waves generated in Jupiter’s massive magnetic field (the magnetosphere), to produce the audio. 

This image from NASA  shows the dark side of the Jovian moon Ganymede taken by the Juno spacecraft as it flew by on June 7, 2021

This image from NASA  shows the dark side of the Jovian moon Ganymede taken by the Juno spacecraft as it flew by on June 7, 2021

A rotating, solar-powered spacecraft, Juno arrived at Jupiter in 2016 after making a five-year journey (depicted here in artist's impression)

Juno is a solar-powered, rotating spacecraft. It arrived at Jupiter after completing a five-year journey. 


In July, NASA confirmed the first evidence of water vapour on Ganymede. 

Researchers compared UV observations taken by the Hubble Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph of Ganymede in 1998, 2010 and 2018, and found that they were similar.

STIS’ 1998 UV images showed moon atmosphere bands that looked similar to Earth’s aurora. The discrepancy observed in previous observations was thought to be due to lower levels of atomic Ox.

Learn more: Hubble detects water vapour on Jupiter’s moon Ganymede 

Their frequency was then shifted into the audio range to create the audio track, which was shared in a briefing at American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting at the weekend. 

Experts still continue with detailed analysis and modeling of Waves’ data in an effort to understand some strange sounds.  

William Kurth of Iowa City University, who is the lead investigator in the Waves investigation, said that it was possible for frequency to change within a few seconds of closest approach. 

Bolton said that Juno has a set of sensitive instruments that can be used to see Ganymede “in ways never before possible” and Jupiter as well. 

The mysterious ice moon’s surface is brightly colored with ridges, grooves, and large areas of light that cut across darker, older terrains. 

These grooved areas are an indication that the moon was subject to dramatic changes in the distant past.   

Bolton stated that Ganymede’s Ice Shell has light- and dark-colored regions. This suggests that there may be areas of pure ice in some parts while others might have dirty ice.   

Also at the weekend, the Juno team released its latest image of Jupiter’s faint dust ring, taken from inside the ring looking outwards. 

This high-resolution image of Jupiter's main dust ring was collected by the Stellar Reference Unit (SRU) navigation camera aboard NASA's Juno spacecraft. The image was taken from inside the ring looking out as Juno flew between Jupiter and the radiation belts during the spacecraft's 36th close flyby on September 2, 2021. The brightest thin dust bands are associated with the orbits of Jupiter's small moons, Metis and Adrastea. The image is at a resolution of nearly 20 miles (32 kilometers) per pixel

The Juno Spacecraft’s Stellar Reference Unit (SRU), navigation camera, captured this high-resolution photo of Jupiter’s main dust rings. This image was captured from within the ring, looking out at Juno as it flew between Jupiter’s radiation belts on the 36th close-flyby of Juno on September 2, 2021. Associated with Jupiter’s smaller moons Metis, Adrastea and Metis are the most brightest dust band. Image resolution is nearly 20 miles (32 km) per pixel

This JunoCam image shows two of Jupiter's large rotating storms, captured on Juno's 38th perijove pass on November 29, 2021

The JunoCam JunoCam image depicts two large rotating storms of Jupiter, taken on Juno’s 38th Perijove Pass on November 29, 2021

This image was captured as Juno flew in between Jupiter’s radiation belts and Jupiter during Juno’s 36th close-flyby on September 2, this year.   

Juno data has also been used to create the most comprehensive map of Jupiter’s magnetic field. 

This map was compiled from data taken from 32 orbits of Juno during Juno’s prime mission. The Great Blue Spot (GBS) is a magnetic anomaly that lies at the planet’s Equator.  

NASA reports that the Great Blue Spot drifts eastward at about 4 cm per second in relation to Jupiter’s innermost regions. It will eventually lap Jupiter in approximately 350 years. 

A new, highly detailed map of Jupiter's magnetic field based on data from NASA's Juno spacecraft renders in high resolution a mysterious region of the field nicknamed the Great Blue Spot (GBS)

Based on NASA’s Juno spacecraft data, a new map of Jupiter’s magnet field has been created. It shows in great detail a region known as the Great Blue Spot (GBS).

The left image shows a close-up of a phytoplankton blooming in the southern Gulf of Bothnia, in the Baltic Sea, between Sweden and Finland on April 14, 2019. The right image shows turbulent clouds in Jupiter's atmosphere

Left image is a close up of phytoplankton that was blooming at the Baltic Sea’s southern Gulf of Bothnia on April 14th 2019. It can be seen between Sweden and Finland. The right photo shows Jupiter’s turbulent clouds.

Additionally, this map shows Jupiter’s zonel winds (jet stream that runs east to west) pulling apart the GBS.  

It means that zonal winds measuring on the planet’s surface reach deeper into its interior. 

Juno data has also helped researchers to find similarities between Jupiter and Earth. 

Cyclones at Jupiter’s pole ‘share similarities’ with closed circular flows of water, called vortices, on Earth, as seen in satellite images of phytoplankton blooming. 

‘Although Jupiter’s energy system is on a scale much larger than Earth’s, understanding the dynamics of the Jovian atmosphere could help us understand the physical mechanisms at play on our own planet,’ NASA says.  

Juno will continue its investigation of Jupiter – our Solar System’s largest planet – through September 2025, or until the spacecraft’s end of life.          

NASA’s Juno probe will discover the secrets about Jupiter, the largest planet in the solar system

The Juno probe reached Jupiter in 2016 after a five-year, 1.8 billion-mile journey from Earth

In 2016, the Juno probe reached Jupiter after an extended journey of five years and 1.8billion miles.

Juno reached Jupiter July 4, 2016 after an extended journey of five years and a distance of 1.8 billion miles (2.28bn km).

After a successful brake maneuver, the spacecraft entered a long-polar orbit and flew to within 3100 miles (5,000km) of its swirling cloud tops.

It skimmed within 2,600 miles (4.200 km) of planet’s clouds twice a week – too close for one image to give global coverage.

Although no spacecraft before has been so close to Jupiter’s orbit, two other craft have plummeted to its destruction via the atmosphere.

Juno survived the radiation storm caused by Jupiter’s magnetic field that destroyed its circuit to finish her risky mission.

This radiation environment is composed of high-energy particles traveling at almost the speed of light. It’s the most severe in the Solar System.

Special radiation-hardened wire and shielding were used to protect the spacecraft from the extreme conditions.

The spacecraft’s vital ‘brain, the flight computer of its satellites, was kept in an armored vault made from titanium that weighed almost 400 pounds and nearly 172 kg.

Up to 2025, the spacecraft will be studying the atmospheric composition of planet Earth.