NASA releases new image of Jupiter’s swirling clouds

Mindy Sparks
November 16, 2018

NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory is the one who labeled the image as a "dragon's eye" while asking its followers what they see in Jupiter's swirling clouds. In these new Juno images, Jupiter's swirling clouds look fascinating.

The U.S. space agency extended the mission through 2021 back in June, and says this image was taken as the probe performed its 16 close-approach fly by of the giant gas planet back on October 29.

"At the time, Juno was about 4,400 miles from the planet's cloud tops, at a latitude of approximately 40 degrees north", NASA said in a written statement. "I see a Squid", wrote aurora chaser Noel Blaney.

"Quetzalcoatl!" another guessed, referring to an ancient term that translates to "feathered serpent" or "flying reptile".

Juno captured this photo, but citizen scientists Gerald Eichstädt and Seán Dora are credited with processing the image.


The dark regions are where the clouds extend deeper toward the planet's interior; Juno's JIRAM experiment, which uses infrared, suggests these darker regions are hotter, according to NASA.

"A multitude of magnificent, swirling clouds in Jupiter's dynamic North North Temperate Belt is captured in this image from NASA's Juno spacecraft, ' NASA says in a post".

The Juno spacecraft launched on August 5, 2011, and arrived at Jupiter five years later in 2016. From the recent detection of atmospheric wave trains, to providing closer than ever looks at the planet's disappearing red spot, the data from the Juno missions has already greatly expanded our knowledge of the planet and there are still a few years left thanks to a mission extension announced this past June. Underneath its dense cloud cover, Jupiter safeguards secrets to the fundamental processes and conditions that governed our solar system during its formation.

As the spacecraft explores the fifth planet from the Sun, it has taken some impressive pictures along the way.

Another image Eichstadt and Doran created from the spacecraft's JunoCam reminded many people of Vincent Van Gogh's "Starry Night" painting, Space.com reported past year. "The bright clouds are most likely ammonia or ammonia and water, mixed with a sprinkling of unknown chemical ingredients".

Other reports by Iphone Fresh

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