Besides image processing and the discussion board, the JunoCam project has two other key features. First, the JunoCam team is asking amateur astronomers to post telescopic images of Jupiter and other data that is gathered from Earth. Those uploads are then used to help Juno team members plan what JunoCam will image during upcoming flybys of Jupiter. Some of the images that have been processed are using that data already: Some of the user-submitted image show how the features that are seen in the JunoCam image correlate with the features that are seen in images of Jupiter taken by previous space or ground-based instruments.
“That allows us to connect what we’re seeing from our different perspective to the historical record of the dynamics of Jupiter’s atmosphere,” Hansen said.
The final task that the JunoCam project will pose to the public is voting on which features will be imaged during future flybys. JunoCam can’t take pictures continuously while Juno is making its close flyby of Jupiter, so the organizers have to be selective. Hansen said there will be a “partial vote” for what JunoCam should focus on during its next close approach on Dec. 11. Full voting will take place for the following close approach, scheduled to take place on Feb. 2.