NASA’s Juno spacecraft has successfully completed a close flyby over Jupiter’s most recognisable feature, the Great Red Spot. The spacecraft is now beaming back the data captured during the flyby, and the images are expected to surface over the course of the next few days. All the scientific instruments on board the spacecraft were functioning as expected during the flyby. The next close flyby of Jupiter is scheduled for 1 September.

Scott Bolton, principal investigator of Juno says, “For generations people from all over the world and all walks of life have marveled over the Great Red Spot. Now we are finally going to see what this storm looks like up close and personal.” The Great Red Spot is a 16,000 kilometer wide storm that has been directly observed since 1830, and has been raging for more than three hundred and fifty years. Recent observations indicate that the storm is shrinking. The spacecraft passed just 9000 kilometers over the storm. The Great Red Spot is actually bigger than the entire Earth.

Image: NASA.
Image: NASA.

NASA is making the raw images taken from Juno available for processing by the public. Users can also track the movement of Juno in realtime, and follow it during its more important scientific observations, through the NASA’s Eyes application.

Publish date: July 12, 2017 4:22 pm| Modified date: July 12, 2017 4:22 pm

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