If you’re going to go all the way out to Jupiter, and spend months snapping pix, you really, really ought to get some pictures of the Red Spot. The Great Red Spot has been observed since 1830, but never from this close.
This week’s close flyby picked up the best pictures ever from this giant hurricane.
The visual imagery was rapidly processed to produce a pretty picture. The entire data collection will be analyzed and described soon (presumably by the end of the year conferences).
The composite image gives us the impression of this massive storm. Visually, it is clearly a really complicated “hurricane of hurricanes”.
The more detailed analysis may suggest a more refined understanding of how this storm developed and has persisted for at least 150 Earth years.
There will be another close pass on 1 September, just before Cassini’s finial dive at Saturn. The Juno mission will end in February with a deliberate dive into the atmosphere.
- Agle, DC, Dwayne Brown, and Laurie Cantillo, NASA’s Juno Spacecraft Spots Jupiter’s Great Red Spot, in NASA Latest, M. Perez, Editor. 2017. https://www.nasa.gov/feature/jpl/nasa-s-juno-spacecraft-spots-jupiter-s-great-red-spot