Hubble Space Telescope recently imaged arguably solar system’s most beautiful planet, Jupiter. The image shows more intense colours than previous images of the planet, showing off the dramatic cloud formations which move in bands, giving the planet its striped appearance.
The image was taken on June 27, 2019, by the NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope that reveals the giant planet’s trademark Great Red Spot. The colours, and their changes, provide important clues to ongoing processes in Jupiter’s atmosphere.The bands are created by differences in the thickness and height of the ammonia ice clouds.
The colourful bands, which flow in opposite directions at various latitudes, result from different atmospheric pressures. Lighter bands rise higher and have thicker clouds than the darker bands.
Bands of clouds move in different directions, due to the differing thicknesses of ammonia ice clouds. The darker bands are areas with thinner clouds, while the lighter bands have thicker clouds.
"The colours, and their changes, provide important clues to ongoing processes in Jupiter's atmosphere," the space agency wrote in a news release.The European Space Agency, which operates the telescope along with the NASA, said the photo confirms that the Great Red Spot, a massive storm roughly the diameter of Earth, is still shrinking. The storm has been raging for at least 150 years, the ESA said.
"The reason for this is still unknown so Hubble will continue to observe Jupiter in the hope that scientists will be able to solve this stormy riddle," the ESA wrote in a blog post.
"Much smaller storms appear on Jupiter as white or brown ovals that can last as little as a few hours or stretch on for centuries.
"According to NASA, the bands are created by differing heights and thicknesses of ammonia ice clouds. Different atmospheric pressures thus create the flowing pattern of the bands."Lighter bands rise higher and have thicker clouds than the darker bands," the NASA said.