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Juno Captures It’s First Close-Up Images Of Jupiter

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Juno has captured it’s first close-up images of Jupiter and they show us a stunning Jovian world riddled with chaotic weather storms. Images show cyclones as big as 870 miles (1,400 km) in diameter swirling over Jupiter’s north and south poles.

Juno went into Jupiter’s orbit in July with a goal of seeing through the cloudy atmosphere and provide insights into how the planet formed. The $1.1bn probe has survived a six-year, 2.8 billion km journey and now orbits around the planet’s north and south poles.

Two papers (one here, and one here) from Science Today detail the images and describe the chaotic atmosphere including massive cyclones, lightning storms, and ammonia rivers.

“We were all jumping up and down with excitement when the images came down. You’ve got to be patient, but the rewards are fantastic.”

– Fran Bagenal, Planetary Physicist, University of Colorado

Take a look at some of the images captured by Juno below:




 

a 53 day timelapse of Juno’s journey. Photograph: Credits: NASA/SWRI/MSSS/Gerald Eichstädt/Seán Doran
A closeup of the North polar region of Jupiter. Photograph: MSSS/SwRI/JPL-Caltech/NASA



 

Jupiter’s south pole as seen by Juno at altitude of 32,000 miles (52,000 kilometers). Photograph: NASA/JPL-Caltech/SwRI/MSSS/Betsy Asher Hall/Gervasio Robles

As Juno continues to orbit Jupiter it will be sending back more amazing images, until then, our fingers are crossed.

You can read more about Juno’s latest pass here. “Jupiter’s atmosphere features colossal cyclones and rivers of ammonia welling up from deep inside the solar system’s largest planet, researchers said on Thursday, publishing the first insights from a NASA spacecraft flying around the gas giant.”

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