Juno: Unlocking Jupiter's Mysteries (NASA New Frontiers)

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Juno Completes Flyby over Jupiter's Great Red Spot

Postby bystander » Wed Jul 12, 2017 5:25 pm

Juno Completes Flyby over Jupiter's Great Red Spot
NASA | JPL-Caltech | SwRI | Juno | 2017 Jul 11

NASA's Juno mission completed a close flyby of Jupiter and its Great Red Spot on July 10, during its sixth science orbit.

All of Juno's science instruments and the spacecraft's JunoCam were operating during the flyby, collecting data that are now being returned to Earth. Juno's next close flyby of Jupiter will occur on Sept. 1.

Raw images from the spacecraft's latest flyby will be posted in coming days. ...

Juno reached perijove (the point at which an orbit comes closest to Jupiter's center) on July 10 at 6:55 p.m. PDT (9:55 p.m. EDT). At the time of perijove, Juno was about 2,200 miles (3,500 kilometers) above the planet's cloud tops. Eleven minutes and 33 seconds later, Juno had covered another 24,713 miles (39,771 kilometers), and was passing directly above the coiling crimson cloud tops of the Great Red Spot. The spacecraft passed about 5,600 miles (9,000 kilometers) above the clouds of this iconic feature. ...
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Re: Juno Completes Flyby over Jupiter's Great Red Spot

Postby Case » Wed Jul 12, 2017 7:20 pm

I’m curious to see if such a close flyby will reveal different heights in cloud tops, especially in/around the Great Red Spot. Will there be visual photography that may show that kind of depth?

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Juno Spots Jupiter's Great Red Spot

Postby bystander » Thu Jul 13, 2017 5:18 pm

Juno Spots Jupiter's Great Red Spot
NASA | JPL-Caltech | SwRI | Juno | 2017 Jun 12


Images of Jupiter's Great Red Spot reveal a tangle of dark, veinous clouds weaving their way through a massive crimson oval. The JunoCam imager aboard NASA's Juno mission snapped pics of the most iconic feature of the solar system's largest planetary inhabitant during its Monday (July 10) flyby. The images of the Great Red Spot were downlinked from the spacecraft's memory on Tuesday and placed on the mission's JunoCam website Wednesday morning.

"For hundreds of years scientists have been observing, wondering and theorizing about Jupiter's Great Red Spot," said Scott Bolton, Juno principal investigator from the Southwest Research Institute in San Antonio. "Now we have the best pictures ever of this iconic storm. It will take us some time to analyze all the data from not only JunoCam, but Juno's eight science instruments, to shed some new light on the past, present and future of the Great Red Spot."

As planned by the Juno team, citizen scientists took the raw images of the flyby from the JunoCam site and processed them, providing a higher level of detail than available in their raw form. The citizen-scientist images, as well as the raw images they used for image processing, can be found at:

https://www.missionjuno.swri.edu/junocam/processing
https://www.nasa.gov/jupiter


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Jupiter's Auroras Present a Powerful Mystery

Postby bystander » Thu Sep 07, 2017 3:51 pm

Jupiter's Auroras Present a Powerful Mystery
NASA | JPL-Caltech | SwRI | Juno | 2017 Sep 06

Scientists on NASA's Juno mission have observed massive amounts of energy swirling over Jupiter's polar regions that contribute to the giant planet's powerful auroras - only not in ways the researchers expected.

Examining data collected by the ultraviolet spectrograph and energetic-particle detector instruments aboard the Jupiter-orbiting Juno spacecraft, a team led by Barry Mauk of the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory, Laurel, Maryland, observed signatures of powerful electric potentials, aligned with Jupiter's magnetic field, that accelerate electrons toward the Jovian atmosphere at energies up to 400,000 electron volts. This is 10 to 30 times higher than the largest auroral potentials observed at Earth, where only several thousands of volts are typically needed to generate the most intense auroras -- known as discrete auroras -- the dazzling, twisting, snake-like northern and southern lights seen in places like Alaska and Canada, northern Europe, and many other northern and southern polar regions.

Jupiter has the most powerful auroras in the solar system, so the team was not surprised that electric potentials play a role in their generation. What's puzzling the researchers, Mauk said, is that despite the magnitudes of these potentials at Jupiter, they are observed only sometimes and are not the source of the most intense auroras, as they are at Earth. ...

Scientists consider Jupiter to be a physics lab of sorts for worlds beyond our solar system, saying the ability of Jupiter to accelerate charged particles to immense energies has implications for how more distant astrophysical systems accelerate particles. But what they learn about the forces driving Jupiter's auroras and shaping its space weather environment also has practical implications in our own planetary backyard. ...

Discrete and broadband electron acceleration in Jupiter’s powerful aurora - B. H. Mauk et al
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Juno Aces Eighth Science Pass of Jupiter

Postby bystander » Fri Nov 03, 2017 10:40 pm

Juno Aces Eighth Science Pass of Jupiter
NASA | JPL-Caltech | SwRI | Juno | 2017 Nov 03

Data returned Tuesday, Oct. 31, indicate that NASA's Juno spacecraft successfully completed its eighth science flyby over Jupiter's mysterious cloud tops on Tuesday, Oct. 24. The confirmation was delayed by several days due to solar conjunction at Jupiter, which affected communications during the days prior to and after the flyby. ...
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Re: Juno: Unlocking Jupiter's Mysteries (NASA New Frontiers)

Postby sallyseaver » Wed Nov 22, 2017 8:43 am

Jupiter's Stunning Southern Hemisphere
SwRI | Juno | 2017 Nov 09
See Jupiter’s southern hemisphere in beautiful detail in this new image taken by NASA’s Juno spacecraft. The color-enhanced view captures one of the white ovals in the “String of Pearls,” one of eight massive rotating storms at 40 degrees south latitude on the gas giant planet.

The image was taken on Oct. 24, 2017 at 11:11 a.m. PDT (2:11 p.m. EDT), as Juno performed its ninth close flyby of Jupiter [the eighth science flyby]. At the time the image was taken, the spacecraft was 20,577 miles (33,115 kilometers) from the tops of the clouds of the planet at a latitude of minus 52.96 degrees. The spatial scale in this image is 13.86 miles/pixel (22.3 kilometers/pixel).

Citizen scientists Gerald Eichstädt and Seán Doran processed this image using data from the JunoCam imager.


Image

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Juno Probes Great Red Spot

Postby bystander » Wed Dec 13, 2017 5:09 pm

Juno Probes the Depths of Jupiter's Great Red Spot
NASA | JPL-Caltech | SwRI | Juno | 2017 Dec 11

Jupiter's Great Red Spot: A rotation animation was made by applying
a wind movement model to a mosaic of JunoCam images.
Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/SwRI/MSSS/Gerald Eichstadt/Justin Cowart

Data collected by NASA's Juno spacecraft during its first pass over Jupiter's Great Red Spot in July 2017 indicate that this iconic feature penetrates well below the clouds. Other revelations from the mission include that Jupiter has two previously uncharted radiation zones. ... The science instrument responsible for this in-depth revelation was Juno's Microwave Radiometer (MWR). ...

Juno also has detected a new radiation zone, just above the gas giant's atmosphere, near the equator. The zone includes energetic hydrogen, oxygen and sulfur ions moving at almost light speed. ...

The new zone was identified by the Jupiter Energetic Particle Detector Instrument (JEDI) investigation. The particles are believed to be derived from energetic neutral atoms (fast-moving ions with no electric charge) created in the gas around the Jupiter moons Io and Europa. The neutral atoms then become ions as their electrons are stripped away by interaction with the upper atmosphere of Jupiter.

Juno also found signatures of a high-energy heavy ion population within the inner edges of Jupiter's relativistic electron radiation belt -- a region dominated by electrons moving close to the speed of light. The signatures are observed during Juno's high-latitude encounters with the electron belt, in regions never explored by prior spacecraft. The origin and exact species of these particles is not yet understood. Juno's Stellar Reference Unit (SRU-1) star camera detects the signatures of this population as extremely high noise signatures in images collected by the mission's radiation monitoring investigation. ...
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