DETLEV VAN RAVENSWAAY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY DETLEV VAN RAVENSWAAY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Spacecraft tracking antenna. Artwork of the Milky Way in the night sky over a radio antenna used to track and communicate with spacecraft. This is one of the antennae at Goldstone, California. The site is part of the Deep Space Network, and is used to communicate with spacecraft far out in the solar system. Due to the distances involved, it can take several minutes to send and receive, and signals are very faint and require sensitive detectors and amplifiers. Some of the spacecraft tracked by this antenna include the Pioneer and Voyager missions, as well as the Galileo mission to Jupiter.
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