APOD: Hubble's Jupiter and the Shrinking... (2022 Jan 09)

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APOD: Hubble's Jupiter and the Shrinking... (2022 Jan 09)

Post by APOD Robot » Sun Jan 09, 2022 5:06 am

Image Hubble's Jupiter and the Shrinking Great Red Spot

Explanation: What will become of Jupiter's Great Red Spot? Gas giant Jupiter is the solar system's largest world with about 320 times the mass of planet Earth. Jupiter is home to one of the largest and longest lasting storm systems known, the Great Red Spot (GRS), visible to the left. The GRS is so large it could swallow Earth, although it has been shrinking. Comparison with historical notes indicate that the storm spans only about one third of the exposed surface area it had 150 years ago. NASA's Outer Planets Atmospheres Legacy (OPAL) program has been monitoring the storm more recently using the Hubble Space Telescope. The featured Hubble OPAL image shows Jupiter as it appeared in 2016, processed in a way that makes red hues appear quite vibrant. Modern GRS data indicate that the storm continues to constrict its surface area, but is also becoming slightly taller, vertically. No one knows the future of the GRS, including the possibility that if the shrinking trend continues, the GRS might one day even do what smaller spots on Jupiter have done -- disappear completely.

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Re: APOD: Hubble's Jupiter and the Shrinking... (2022 Jan 09)

Post by Ann » Sun Jan 09, 2022 5:59 am


Jupiter's Great Red Spot is shrinking. Relatively soon it will only be the Red Spot, no longer the Great Red spot. And then it will not even be the Spot.

That's a pity, of course. But as Ecclesiastes reminded us back in the Old Testament, there is a time for everything.

A time for the Earth and the Sun. What was the Earth and the Sun six billion years ago? Nothing. And a time for the Universe. What was our Universe twenty billion years ago? Nothing.

And what was the rings of Saturn a little more than 100 million years ago? Probably nothing:
npr wrote:

You Don't Look A Day Over 100 Million, Rings Of Saturn

Saturn is famous for its lovely rings, but a new study suggests the planet has spent most of its 4.5 billion years without them.

That's because the rings are likely only 10 million to 100 million years old, according to a newly published report in the journal Science that's based on findings from NASA's Cassini probe.
So we may grieve the upcoming loss of the Great Red Spot (and the rings of Saturn), but at least we have lived to see them.

As a Danish newspaper wrote when one of Denmark's great young poets took his life: We have lost him, but at least we have had him.

Ann
Last edited by Ann on Sun Jan 09, 2022 10:07 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: APOD: Hubble's Jupiter and the Shrinking... (2022 Jan 09)

Post by Karol Masztalerz » Sun Jan 09, 2022 6:29 am

I'm very proud that this image has been selected as APOD for the second time. It's been a great pleasure working with OPAL data.
//Karol Masztalerz

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Re: APOD: Hubble's Jupiter and the Shrinking... (2022 Jan 09)

Post by De58te » Sun Jan 09, 2022 1:03 pm

Ann wrote, "What was the Earth and the Sun six billion years ago? Nothing." I kinda disagree with that. Sure the sun and Earth hadn't been born yet, but the key atoms that make it up were still around somewhere. For instance physicists tell us that the heavy elements such as iron and gold had to be created by nuclear fission in supernovas. So even though the iron at the Earth's core and the carbon in the Earth's rocks weren't part of the Earth 6 billion years ago, I would think they were either floating around in dusty nebulas or were in the heart of previous supernova stars yet to be fused into iron. In addition it is said that the sun even to this day is mostly made up of hydrogen. Now the scientists say that all the hydrogen in the universe was created a micro second after the big bang. So that means most of the sun even though it wasn't born yet 6 billion years ago, it already existed floating around in space for over 13 billion years!

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Re: APOD: Hubble's Jupiter and the Shrinking... (2022 Jan 09)

Post by orin stepanek » Sun Jan 09, 2022 1:52 pm

JupiterOpal_HubbleMasztalerz_1880.jpg
All things go sometime; it'll be the redspot's turn someday! :mrgreen:
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Re: APOD: Hubble's Jupiter and the Shrinking... (2022 Jan 09)

Post by Chris Peterson » Sun Jan 09, 2022 2:28 pm

De58te wrote:
Sun Jan 09, 2022 1:03 pm
Ann wrote, "What was the Earth and the Sun six billion years ago? Nothing." I kinda disagree with that. Sure the sun and Earth hadn't been born yet, but the key atoms that make it up were still around somewhere. For instance physicists tell us that the heavy elements such as iron and gold had to be created by nuclear fission in supernovas. So even though the iron at the Earth's core and the carbon in the Earth's rocks weren't part of the Earth 6 billion years ago, I would think they were either floating around in dusty nebulas or were in the heart of previous supernova stars yet to be fused into iron. In addition it is said that the sun even to this day is mostly made up of hydrogen. Now the scientists say that all the hydrogen in the universe was created a micro second after the big bang. So that means most of the sun even though it wasn't born yet 6 billion years ago, it already existed floating around in space for over 13 billion years!
Well, yes. But we do generally treat entities as entities, not as their ingredients. Most people would look at you a bit oddly if you claimed to be several billion years old because your atoms had been around that long. Or your car. Or the tree in your backyard.
Chris

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Re: APOD: Hubble's Jupiter and the Shrinking... (2022 Jan 09)

Post by Karen » Sun Jan 09, 2022 2:49 pm

When was the oldest documented sighting of the giant red spot?

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Re: APOD: Hubble's Jupiter and the Shrinking... (2022 Jan 09)

Post by AVAO » Sun Jan 09, 2022 2:50 pm

I like this animation: Voyager 1 fly by The Great Red Spot is a vortex between two rotating segments of a circle.
As can be seen in the animation, the upper segment of the circle rotates in opposite directions.
how can such a counter rotation be explained physically?
Last edited by AVAO on Sun Jan 09, 2022 4:12 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: APOD: Hubble's Jupiter and the Shrinking... (2022 Jan 09)

Post by Ann » Sun Jan 09, 2022 3:18 pm

AVAO wrote:
Sun Jan 09, 2022 2:50 pm
I like this animation: Voyager 1 fly by
The Great Red Spot was visibly larger when Voyager 1 visited it back in March, 1979.

And compare the appearance of the Great Red Spot in December 1973 with its appearance on April 21, 2014.


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Re: APOD: Hubble's Jupiter and the Shrinking... (2022 Jan 09)

Post by Chris Peterson » Sun Jan 09, 2022 3:29 pm

Ann wrote:
Sun Jan 09, 2022 5:59 am

So we may grieve the upcoming loss of the Great Red Spot (and the rings of Saturn), but at least we have lived to see them.
The fact that we have lived to see both, in just a few hundred years out of nearly 5 billion, suggests that neither are rare. That both massive storms and massive ring systems may come and go... perhaps with great frequency.
Chris

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Re: APOD: Hubble's Jupiter and the Shrinking... (2022 Jan 09)

Post by neufer » Sun Jan 09, 2022 6:29 pm

https://www.nasa.gov/fea, ture/goddard/2018/nasa-s-james-webb-space-telescope-to-target-jupiter-s-great-red-spot wrote:
NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope to Target Jupiter’s Great Red Spot
Jun 25, 2018, Solar System and Beyond

<<NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope, the most ambitious and complex space observatory ever built, will use its unparalleled infrared capabilities to study Jupiter’s Great Red Spot, shedding new light on the enigmatic storm and building upon data returned from NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope and other observatories.

Jupiter’s iconic storm is on the Webb telescope’s list of targets chosen by guaranteed time observers, scientists who helped develop the incredibly complex telescope and among the first to use it to observe the universe. One of the telescope’s science goals is to study planets, including the mysteries still held by the planets in our own solar system from Mars and beyond.

Leigh Fletcher, a senior research fellow in planetary science at the University of Leicester in the United Kingdom, is the lead scientist on the Webb telescope’s observations of Jupiter’s storm. His team is part of a larger effort to study several targets in our solar system with Webb, spearheaded by astronomer Heidi Hammel, the executive vice president of the Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy (AURA). NASA selected Hammel as an interdisciplinary scientist for Webb in 2002.

“Webb’s infrared sensitivity provides a wonderful complement to Hubble visible-wavelength studies of the Great Red Spot,” explained Hammel. “Hubble images have revealed striking changes in the size of the Great Red Spot over the mission’s multi-decade-long lifetime.”

Fletcher and his team plan to use Webb’s mid-infrared instrument (MIRI) to create multispectral maps of the Great Red Spot and analyze its thermal, chemical and cloud structures. The scientists will be able to observe infrared wavelengths that could shed light on what causes the spot’s iconic color, which is often attributed to the sun’s ultraviolet radiation interacting with nitrogen, sulfur and phosphorus-bearing chemicals that are lifted from Jupiter’s deeper atmosphere by powerful atmospheric currents within the storm.

Fletcher explained that using MIRI to observe in the 5 to 7 micrometer range could be particularly revealing for the Great Red Spot, as no other mission has been able to observe Jupiter in that part of the electromagnetic spectrum, and observations in such wavelengths are not possible from Earth. Those wavelengths of light could allow the scientists to see unique chemical byproducts of the storm, which would give insight into its composition.

“We’ll be looking for signatures of any chemical compounds that are unique to the [Great Red Spot]…which could be responsible for the red chromophores,” said Fletcher. Chromophores are the parts of molecules responsible for their color. Fletcher added, “If we don’t see any unexpected chemistry or aerosol signatures…then the mystery of that red color may remain unresolved.”

Webb’s observations may also help determine whether the Great Red Spot is generating heat and releasing it into Jupiter’s upper atmosphere, a phenomenon that could explain the high temperatures in that region. Recent NASA-funded research showed that colliding gravity waves and sound waves, produced by the storm, could generate the observed heat, and Fletcher said Webb might be able to gather data to support this.

“Any waves produced by the vigorous convective activity within the storm must pass through the stratosphere before they reach the ionosphere and thermosphere,” he explained. “So if they really do exist and are responsible for heating Jupiter’s upper layers, hopefully we’ll see evidence for their passage in our data.”

Generations of astronomers have studied the Great Red Spot; the storm has been monitored since 1830, but it has possibly existed for more than 350 years. The reason for the storm’s longevity largely remains a mystery, and Fletcher explained that the key to understanding the formation of storms on Jupiter is to witness their full life cycle — growing, shrinking, and eventually dying. We did not see the Great Red Spot form, and it may not die anytime soon (though it has been shrinking, as documented by images from NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope and other observatories), so scientists must rely on observing “smaller and fresher” storms on the planet to see how they begin and evolve, something that Webb may do in the future, said Fletcher.

“These particular observations will reveal the storm’s vertical structure, which will be an important constraint for numerical simulations of Jovian [Jupiter] meteorology,” he explained. “If those simulations can help explain what Webb observes in the infrared, then we’ll be a step closer to understanding how these gigantic maelstroms live for so long.”>>
Art Neuendorffer

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Re: APOD: Hubble's Jupiter and the Shrinking... (2022 Jan 09)

Post by johnnydeep » Sun Jan 09, 2022 9:34 pm

Ann wrote:
Sun Jan 09, 2022 3:18 pm
AVAO wrote:
Sun Jan 09, 2022 2:50 pm
I like this animation: Voyager 1 fly by
...
The Great Red Spot was visibly larger when Voyager 1 visited it back in March, 1979.

And compare the appearance of the Great Red Spot in December 1973 with its appearance on April 21, 2014.


Ann
I'm trying to figure out whether those two pics are oriented the same way. I guess they are, but why is the GRS in a light band in 1973, but a dark band in 2014? Do the bands change color over time, or are there imaging processing differences involved? Maybe both...
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Re: APOD: Hubble's Jupiter and the Shrinking... (2022 Jan 09)

Post by Microbe » Sun Jan 09, 2022 9:35 pm

"Looks like the weather is clearing" - people on Jupiter.

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Re: APOD: Hubble's Jupiter and the Shrinking... (2022 Jan 09)

Post by johnnydeep » Sun Jan 09, 2022 9:37 pm

Chris Peterson wrote:
Sun Jan 09, 2022 3:29 pm
Ann wrote:
Sun Jan 09, 2022 5:59 am

So we may grieve the upcoming loss of the Great Red Spot (and the rings of Saturn), but at least we have lived to see them.
The fact that we have lived to see both, in just a few hundred years out of nearly 5 billion, suggests that neither are rare. That both massive storms and massive ring systems may come and go... perhaps with great frequency.
I swear I just read a news story about the rings possibly either being billions of years old, or lasting billions of years more. I.e., that they could be much more stable than thought. But, of course, I can't find that "story" now. :(
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Re: APOD: Hubble's Jupiter and the Shrinking... (2022 Jan 09)

Post by Chris Peterson » Sun Jan 09, 2022 10:31 pm

johnnydeep wrote:
Sun Jan 09, 2022 9:37 pm
Chris Peterson wrote:
Sun Jan 09, 2022 3:29 pm
Ann wrote:
Sun Jan 09, 2022 5:59 am

So we may grieve the upcoming loss of the Great Red Spot (and the rings of Saturn), but at least we have lived to see them.
The fact that we have lived to see both, in just a few hundred years out of nearly 5 billion, suggests that neither are rare. That both massive storms and massive ring systems may come and go... perhaps with great frequency.
I swear I just read a news story about the rings possibly either being billions of years old, or lasting billions of years more. I.e., that they could be much more stable than thought. But, of course, I can't find that "story" now. :(
I remember that, too. Honestly, I don't think we know enough about ring systems or the details of Saturn's that I would have much confidence in either position just yet.
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Re: APOD: Hubble's Jupiter and the Shrinking... (2022 Jan 09)

Post by MoonRockMan » Mon Jan 10, 2022 12:08 am

Is that one of the moon's shadows on the far left side?

Karol Masztalerz

Re: APOD: Hubble's Jupiter and the Shrinking... (2022 Jan 09)

Post by Karol Masztalerz » Mon Jan 10, 2022 2:54 am

MoonRockMan wrote:
Mon Jan 10, 2022 12:08 am
Is that one of the moon's shadows on the far left side?
Yes, it is!

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Re: APOD: Hubble's Jupiter and the Shrinking... (2022 Jan 09)

Post by MoonRockMan » Mon Jan 10, 2022 3:16 am

Karol Masztalerz wrote:
Mon Jan 10, 2022 2:54 am
MoonRockMan wrote:
Mon Jan 10, 2022 12:08 am
Is that one of the moon's shadows on the far left side?
Yes, it is!
That pleases me :D Thank you for confirming

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Re: APOD: Hubble's Jupiter and the Shrinking... (2022 Jan 09)

Post by Ann » Mon Jan 10, 2022 4:41 am

johnnydeep wrote:
Sun Jan 09, 2022 9:34 pm
Ann wrote:
Sun Jan 09, 2022 3:18 pm
AVAO wrote:
Sun Jan 09, 2022 2:50 pm
I like this animation: Voyager 1 fly by
...
The Great Red Spot was visibly larger when Voyager 1 visited it back in March, 1979.

And compare the appearance of the Great Red Spot in December 1973 with its appearance on April 21, 2014.


Ann
I'm trying to figure out whether those two pics are oriented the same way. I guess they are, but why is the GRS in a light band in 1973, but a dark band in 2014? Do the bands change color over time, or are there imaging processing differences involved? Maybe both...

Jupiter has been known to lose its South Equatorial Belt before:


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Re: APOD: Hubble's Jupiter and the Shrinking... (2022 Jan 09)

Post by Ann » Mon Jan 10, 2022 5:38 am

johnnydeep wrote:
Sun Jan 09, 2022 9:37 pm
Chris Peterson wrote:
Sun Jan 09, 2022 3:29 pm
Ann wrote:
Sun Jan 09, 2022 5:59 am

So we may grieve the upcoming loss of the Great Red Spot (and the rings of Saturn), but at least we have lived to see them.
The fact that we have lived to see both, in just a few hundred years out of nearly 5 billion, suggests that neither are rare. That both massive storms and massive ring systems may come and go... perhaps with great frequency.
I swear I just read a news story about the rings possibly either being billions of years old, or lasting billions of years more. I.e., that they could be much more stable than thought. But, of course, I can't find that "story" now. :(
Here it is: https://earthsky.org/space/saturn-rings ... ng-or-old/

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Re: APOD: Hubble's Jupiter and the Shrinking... (2022 Jan 09)

Post by johnnydeep » Mon Jan 10, 2022 3:03 pm

MoonRockMan wrote:
Mon Jan 10, 2022 3:16 am
Karol Masztalerz wrote:
Mon Jan 10, 2022 2:54 am
MoonRockMan wrote:
Mon Jan 10, 2022 12:08 am
Is that one of the moon's shadows on the far left side?
Yes, it is!
That pleases me :D Thank you for confirming
I suppose you must be referring to this unusually dark oblong spot?:

jupiter moon shadow.JPG
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Re: APOD: Hubble's Jupiter and the Shrinking... (2022 Jan 09)

Post by johnnydeep » Mon Jan 10, 2022 3:06 pm

Ann wrote:
Mon Jan 10, 2022 4:41 am
Jupiter has been known to lose its South Equatorial Belt before:

Ann
Amazing. I didn't think the bands could change that quickly! And yet, the GRS is almost permanent by comparison. Which is, frankly, even more amazing.
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Re: APOD: Hubble's Jupiter and the Shrinking... (2022 Jan 09)

Post by johnnydeep » Mon Jan 10, 2022 3:13 pm

Ann wrote:
Mon Jan 10, 2022 5:38 am
johnnydeep wrote:
Sun Jan 09, 2022 9:37 pm
Chris Peterson wrote:
Sun Jan 09, 2022 3:29 pm


The fact that we have lived to see both, in just a few hundred years out of nearly 5 billion, suggests that neither are rare. That both massive storms and massive ring systems may come and go... perhaps with great frequency.
I swear I just read a news story about the rings possibly either being billions of years old, or lasting billions of years more. I.e., that they could be much more stable than thought. But, of course, I can't find that "story" now. :(
Here it is: https://earthsky.org/space/saturn-rings ... ng-or-old/

Ann
Thanks! I'm not recognizing that as the exact story I read, but the sentiment is similar. Was that earthsky.org link in a recent APOD?
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Re: APOD: Hubble's Jupiter and the Shrinking... (2022 Jan 09)

Post by MoonRockMan » Tue Jan 11, 2022 4:16 am

johnnydeep wrote:
Mon Jan 10, 2022 3:03 pm
MoonRockMan wrote:
Mon Jan 10, 2022 3:16 am
Karol Masztalerz wrote:
Mon Jan 10, 2022 2:54 am

Yes, it is!
That pleases me :D Thank you for confirming
I suppose you must be referring to this unusually dark oblong spot?:


jupiter moon shadow.JPG
Exactly :ssmile:

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Re: APOD: Hubble's Jupiter and the Shrinking... (2022 Jan 09)

Post by johnnydeep » Tue Jan 11, 2022 4:22 pm

MoonRockMan wrote:
Tue Jan 11, 2022 4:16 am
johnnydeep wrote:
Mon Jan 10, 2022 3:03 pm
MoonRockMan wrote:
Mon Jan 10, 2022 3:16 am


That pleases me :D Thank you for confirming
I suppose you must be referring to this unusually dark oblong spot?:


jupiter moon shadow.JPG
Exactly :ssmile:
You have very observant eyes!
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