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Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Eye to Eye with Jupiter

Red Eye in the Sky     (Public Domain)
Red eyes on Earth can mean anything from fatigue to despondency.  The Red Eye of Jupiter is a lot livelier than that.

Also called Jupiter’s Great Red Spot, it’s actually a planet-sized storm that’s been raging “for hundreds of years.”  Talk about the need for climate control!

What keeps this cyclone from petering out? Some theorize that vertical flows “transport gas from above and below the storm into the Great Red Spot’s center, constantly replenishing the energy needed…”

Like one big whirligig, this Eye has kept scientists amused (and bemused) for decades. Because Jupiter is shrouded in gas clouds, Earthlings have not been able to stare it down. 

Big news, however, may soon be on the horizon.  NASA’s Juno craft is about to go eye to Eye with the Great Red Spot, “passing within 5,600 miles of the storm’s surface.” 


Copyright July 11, 2017 by Linda Van Slyke   All Rights Reserved

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