Southeast of the Pearl

south-of-the-pearlThis amateur-processed image was taken at 17:27 UTC on 11 December, 2016, as the Juno spacecraft performed its third close flyby of Jupiter. The spacecraft was about 24,400 km above the planet when the image was taken.

Eric Jorgensen, the amateur scientist who did the image processing, cropped the raw JunoCam image and enhanced the color to draw attention to Jupiter’s swirling clouds southeast of the “pearl.” The “pearl” in the upper left is one of eight massive storms at 40 degrees south latitude on Jupiter known colloquially as the “string of pearls.” Jorgensen’s processing of this image highlights the turbulence of the clouds in the south temperate belt of the planet.

Image Credits: NASA / JPL / SwRI / MSSS / Eric Jorgensen

Crescent Jupiter

crescent-jupiterThis picture was taken by JunoCam at 22:30 UTC on 11 December, 2016, as the Juno spacecraft performed its third close flyby of Jupiter. The spacecraft was about 459,000 km from the planet. The series of storm shaped like white ovals is known as the “string of pearls, and the reddish storm between them and the Great Red Spot is known as Oval BA.


Image Credit: NASA

Jupiter’s Pearls

pearl-7This image was taken by the JunoCam imager on the Juno spacecraft. It shows one of the eight oval features forming a ‘string of pearls’ on Jupiter—massive counterclockwise rotating storms that appear in the gas giant’s southern hemisphere. Since 1986,  there have been from six to nine of these “pearls” visible. There are currently eight of these white ovals. The image was taken on 11 December, 2016, at 17:27. UTC, as Juno performed its third close flyby of Jupiter. At the time the image was taken, the spacecraft just under 25,000 km from the planet.

Image Credit: NASA

Jupiter’s South Pole

south_polar_full_diskThe Juno spacecraft took this picture which provides a never-before-seen perspective on Jupiter’s south pole. The JunoCam acquired the view on 27 August, 2016, when the spacecraft was about 95,000 km above the polar region.

Unlike Jupiter’s equatorial region’s familiar structure of belts and zones, the poles are mottled by clockwise and counterclockwise rotating storms of various sizes, similar to giant versions of terrestrial hurricanes. The south pole has never been seen from this viewpoint, although the Cassini spacecraft took a quick look at the polar region at highly oblique angles as it flew past Jupiter on its way to Saturn in 2000.

Image Credit: NASA