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Jet stream and tempests, taken by Juno

Tumultuous tempests in Jupiter's northern hemisphere are seen in this portrait taken by NASA's Juno spacecraft. 

Tumultuous tempests in Jupiter's northern hemisphere are seen in this portrait taken by NASA's Juno spacecraft. 

Like our home planet, Jupiter has cyclones and anticyclones, along with fast-moving jet streams that circle its globe. This image captures a jet stream, called Jet N6, located on the far right of the image. It is next to an anticyclonic white oval that is the brighter circular feature in the top right corner. The North North Little Red Spot is also visible in this view.

 

The image was taken on July 16, as the spacecraft performed its 14th close flyby of Jupiter. At the time, Juno was about 17,000 kilometers from the planet's cloud tops, above a latitude of 59 degrees. 

Citizen scientists Brian Swift and Seán Doran created this image using data from the spacecraft's JunoCam imager. The image has been rotated clockwise so that north is to the right. The stars were artfully added to the background for effect.

 

JUNO's goal is to analyse the Jupiter’s characteristics as representative of the giant planets. The Solar System’s ‘heavyweight’ can, in fact, offer fundamentally important data not only for gaining deeper knowledge of the origin of the System itself, but also for analysing those of the planetary systems that are gradually discovered around other stars, with particular reference to those exoplanets that have a similar mass to that of Jupiter. 

 

JUNO's heart is the Italian JIRAM (Jovian InfraRed Auroral Mapper), financed by ASI, built by Leonardo-Finmeccanica and operated under the scientific responsibility of INAF's Institute of Astrophysics and Planetology (IAPS).  JUNO's other Italian component is KaT (Ka-Band Translator), a radio science instrument designed by the 'La Sapienza' University of Rome, built by Thales Alenia Space Italia (A Thales/Leonardo-Finmeccanica company) again with ASI's support.