QR.bizNewsSee Dramatic Cyclones Churning on Jupiter's Surface in These New NASA Photos

See Dramatic Cyclones Churning on Jupiter's Surface in These New NASA Photos

This image is one in a series of images taken in a Juno mission experiment to capture the best results for illuminated parts of Jupiter's polar region.

Astronomers have snapped a stunning photo of Jupiter's "twilight zone", or where sunset and sunrise meet on the planet's surface. The bands were thought to be an expression of Jovian weather, related to winds blowing eastward and westward at different speeds. The Jovian weather layer contains about one per cent of the Jupiter's mass, which is about three times the Earth's mass, and deepens to a depth of 1,900 miles (3,000 kilometers).

Like the Great Red Spot, the wind belts have persisted for hundreds of years and they are strong - much stronger than the fiercest winds on Earth, but ironically it is the flow of these bands that run from both east to west and west to east that have helped scientists measure how deep they go. Thus, the magnitude of the asymmetry in gravity determines how deep the jet streams extend. "Until now, we only had a superficial understanding of them and have been able to relate these stripes to cloud features along Jupiter's jets. It's like going from a 2-D picture to a 3-D version in high definition".

The results given by Juno spacecraft came as a surprise to the NASA team as it indicated that the weather layer of the Jupiter was more massive, extending much deeper than expected. This mass is significantly larger than Earth's. In addition, the gravity signature of the jets is entangled with the gravity signal of Jupiter's core.

"This is really an awesome result, and future measurements by Juno will help us understand how the transition works between the weather layer and the rigid body below", said Tristan Guillot, a Juno co-investigator from the Université Côte d'Azur, Nice, France. Less is also the lead author of a paper included in the journal "Nature". It's a color-enhanced image acquired during Juno's 11th close flyby of Jupiter on February 7.

JIRAM probes Jupiter's weather layer to up to 50 to 70 kilometers under the planet's cloud tops.

For those that were more than excited to find out what Juno saw on Jupiter, we are to tell you all about it.

Tristan Guillot, a Juno co-investigator from the France University, said, "This is really an wonderful result, and future measurements by Juno will help us understand how the transition works between the weather layer and the rigid body below".

Adriani explained that the width of each of the northern cyclones is the distance between New York City and Naples, and the Southern cyclones are even more massive in comparison. These poles are one of a kind in the solar system, being very close to one another, having very fast winds up to 350 kph, and being very large in size. A feature such as it is something that is like nothing else that has been observed so far in the solar system.

A central cyclone, which dominates the gas giant's north pole, is surrounded by eight circumpolar cyclones (as seen in the photo).

Almost all the polar cyclones, at both the north and south pole of Jupiter, are so tightly packed that their spiral arms are in contact with the cyclone located just next to them.

Image via NASA  JPL-Caltech  SwRI  MSSS  Gerald Eichstädt

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