Updated: April 21, 2020 12:02:38 pm
As the largest planet orbiting the Sun, Jupiter holds the reputation of being a body that has a profound influence on the solar system. NASA’s Juno spacecraft is currently studying the gas giant’s gravitational and magnetic fields among other things including its vast magnetosphere, aurora, and the swirling clouds of its atmosphere.
The space agency recently shared a picture (21MB in size) of the elaborate atmospheric jets in Jupiter’s northern mid-latitude region on a website dedicated to the Juno mission. Citizen scientist Kevin M Gill processed this JunoCam image, which was taken on April 10, 2020, as the Juno spacecraft performed its 26th close flyby of the planet.
“At the time the image was taken, the spacecraft was about 5,375 miles (8,650 kilometres) from Jupiter’s cloud tops at a latitude of about 50 degrees North. The spacecraft was travelling about 127,000 mph (204,000 kilometres per hour) relative to the planet at that time,” NASA said.
According to the space agency, this detailed colour-enhanced image (shared above) reveals a complex topography in Jupiter’s cloud tops. Upon a closer look, we can spot relatively small and bright “pop-up” clouds that rise above the surrounding features and stand out at the tops and edges of the swirling patterns.
Here are some other colour-enhanced pictures of Jupiter that look like modern art portrait:
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