Giant Spotted Planets


jupiter_red_spotOne of the most recognizable features in the Solar System is Jupiter’s Red Spot. However, Jupiter is not the only spotted planet. Neptune has long-term storm systems known as the dark spots. Voyager 2 made a close up picture of a Great Dark Spot when it flew by Neptune in 1989.

Based on observations taken by Voyager and with the Hubble Space Telescope, Neptune appears to have a Great Dark Spot more often than not. The Great Dark Spot is thought to be a hole in the methane cloud deck of Neptune. nepture_dark spot.

Neptune’s Great Dark Spot generates large white clouds at or just below the tropopause layer of the planet’s atmosphere similar to high-altitude cirrus clouds found on Earth. However, Neptune’s cirrus clouds are made up of crystals of frozen methane instead of water ice.

Image Credits: NASA

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