Jupiter Marble, a reference to the classic Earth photo dubbed Blue Marble, shows the swirling clouds and storms of the gas giant. The photo was captured by the Juno spacecraft that has been studying Jupiter since 2016. ( Kevin M. Gill | NASA/JPL-Caltech/SwRI/MSSS )
The Juno spacecraft continues to deliver breathtaking photos of Jupiter. This week, NASA released a stunning new look at the gas giant.
The new photo has been dubbed “Jupiter Marble,” a reference to an image of Earth called the “Blue Marble,” which was taken in 1972 by the crew of Apollo 17 on their way to the Moon. According to NASA, the stunning new photo was assembled from three separate photos of Jupiter taken by Juno in February as it made a close flyby of the gas giant.
A Look At Jupiter’s Storms
The photo posted on the website of NASA on Thursday, March 21, provides a look at the gas giant’s southern hemisphere. From this angle, several storms and clouds are swirling across the planet.
In the upper right side of the photo appears the Great Red Spot, Jupiter’s infamous giant storm that has been in existence for hundreds of years. It was first observed by astronomers in the 1600s.
On Feb. 12, 2019, Juno captured the images that have become “Jupiter Marble”, as the spacecraft performed its 17th pass. When the images were taken, Juno was around 16,700 miles to 59,300 miles away from the cloud tops of the planet.
Citizen scientist Kevin M. Gill processed the photo to highlight the spinning storms of Jupiter. NASA encourages the public to play around with the images taken by Juno’s JunoCam Imager.
Juno’s Portraits Of Jupiter
Juno has been observing and studying Jupiter since it entered the orbit of the planet in 2016. In the past two years, the spacecraft has sent back incredible photos of the mysterious gas giant, including formations that resemble an infamous character from South Park.
Last month, NASA also released a photo of Jupiter taken by Juno that looked more like a Vincent Van Gogh painting than a planet’s atmosphere.
Juno was launched in 2011 to learn more about the origin and evolution of Jupiter. The spacecraft will study the planet’s gravitational and magnetic fields, magnetosphere, auroras, and atmosphere.
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