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Jupiter's Great Red Spot is deeper than previously thought

Jupiter’s Great Red Spot is deeper than previously thought

I 2011, ah NASA The Juno spacecraft launched toward Jupiter, arriving there in 2016 to help us learn more about the gas giant. Already on Thursday (29), new articles were published describing the latest discoveries of the atmosphere made by the probe. The data reinforced that the Jovian atmosphere gives clues about the processes occurring under the clouds, but cannot be seen, and in addition, the results also show the performance of the clouds and the regions surrounding the planet, as well as hurricanes – of course, from big red spot.

Juno has made nearly 40 passes near Jupiter, and in each of them, his instruments have taken the opportunity to observe what’s below the cloud layer. “Before that, Juno surprised us with signs that phenomena in Jupiter’s atmosphere have gone deeper than we expected,” says Scott Bolton, the probe’s principal investigator. “Now, we’re starting to put all of these pieces together to get our first real understanding of how Jupiter’s beautiful and violent atmosphere works — all in 3D.”

Comparison of Jupiter in infrared light (left) and visible light (right) (Photo: Reproduction / Gemini International Observatory / NOIRLab / NSF / AURA / NASA / ESA / MH Wong / I. de Pater (UC Berkeley) et al. )

The probe’s microwave radiometer allowed scientists to peer beneath the tops of planetary clouds to analyze the structure of the planet’s storms. Well, the new results show that Jupiter’s cyclones are hotter at the top, have lower atmospheric intensity and are cooler at the bottom. actually Antibiotics, which rotate in the opposite direction, are cooler at the top and warmer at the bottom. These storms appear to be larger than previously thought, some as far as 100 km below the cloud tops.

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Others, including big red spot, extends further than expected – this, for example, reaches 500 km below the cloud tops, and appears to be associated with planes that go deeper. This indicates that the upper and lower atmosphere of the planet are connected, and that one is connected to the other. On the other hand, fluctuations in Jupiter’s gravitational field have shown that in addition to a depth of 500 km, it appears to be fed by jets up to 3,000 km deep.

Beyond the storms

Jupiter is also famous for the belts and regions, the white and red regions of the clouds that surround the planet. Juno had already discovered that strong winds coming from east to west separate these strips and reach a depth of 3,200 km. It is not yet clear how these “jet streams” form, but possible evidence is that gaseous ammonia in the atmosphere moves up and down, following the alignment of the jets.

Colored belts in Jupiter’s southern hemisphere, recorded by Juno (Image: Reproduction/NASA/JPL-Caltech/SwRI/MSSS/Kevin M. Gill)

Keren Doerr, lead author of one of the studies, explains that the team tracked down ammonia and found running cells in the southern and northern hemispheres, similar to “ferel cells,” responsible for controlling Earth’s climate. “Whereas Earth has one hemisphere, Jupiter has eight, each at least thirty times larger,” he said. Data from the probe’s instrument showed that the belts and regions undergo transitions 65 km below the planet’s water clouds.

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At shallower depths, the belts get brighter in microwaves, but at deeper levels under water clouds, the opposite phenomenon occurs. Finally, Juno has already shown that giant storms at the poles of the planet arrange themselves in polygons – in the northern hemisphere, eight in an octagonal pattern, and in the south, five in a pentagon. Now, mission scientists have used the Jovian Infrared Auroral Mapper (JIRAM) and determined that the phenomena follow the same location.

Alessandro Mora, lead author of another new article, explains that “ Hurricanes Jupiter And it affects the movement of one of the rest, causing them to swing in a balanced position. Just as on Earth, these hurricanes try to move toward the poles, but those in the center of each end up “pushing” them back, creating a balance that explains their location and number at each pole of the planet.

NASA conducted a webcast to explain all the news about Jupiter brought about by the Juno mission, in the video you can watch it below:

Source: NASAAnd Space.com

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