NASA’s Juno mission, which began orbiting Jupiter in July 2016, recently completed its 38th close-up flight over the gas giant. The mission was extended earlier this year, with the addition of a flyby of Jupiter’s moon Ganymede in June.
Data and images from those bridges rewrote everything we know about Jupiter, said Scott Bolton, Juno’s chief researcher at the Southwest Research Institute in San Antonio, at a briefing at the American Geophysical Union’s fall meeting in New Orleans on Thursday.
There, Bolton revealed 50 seconds of his creation when Juno flew over Ganymede over the summer. The moon’s sound clip was created by electrical and magnetic radio waves produced by the planet’s magnetic field and picked up by the spacecraft’s Waves instrument, designed to detect these waves. The sounds are like a space age soundtrack.
“This soundtrack is wild enough to make you feel like you’re riding as Juno passes Ganymede for the first time in over two decades,” Bolton said. “If you listen carefully, you can hear the sudden shift to higher frequencies in the middle of the recording, which marks the entrance to a different region of the Ganymede magnetosphere.”
The Juno team continues to analyze data from the Ganymede flyby. At the time, Juno was about 645 miles (1,038 kilometers) from the moon’s surface and was spinning at 41,600 miles per hour (67,000 kilometers per hour).
“It is likely that the change in frequency shortly after the closest approach is due to the change from the night side to the day side at Ganymede,” said William Court, co-principal investigator with the Waves instrument, based at the University of Iowa. city, in a press release.
The team also shared stunning new images that look like artistic views of Jupiter’s swirling atmosphere.
“You can see how beautiful Jupiter is,” Bolton said. “It really is an artist’s painting. It’s almost like a Van Gogh painting. You see these wonderful swirls and swirling clouds in different colors.”
These amazing pictures Pictures are used for Helping scientists better understand Jupiter and its many mysteries. Pictures of hurricanes at the poles of Jupiter intrigued Leah Siegelman, a scientist working with the Juno team who usually studies Earth’s oceans. He saw parallels between the dynamics of Jupiter’s atmosphere and its eddies in Earth’s oceans.
“When I saw the richness of the turbulence surrounding Hurricanes Jovian, with all the threads and little eddies, it reminded me of the turbulence you see in the ocean around the eddies,” said Siegelman, a physical oceanographer and postdoctoral fellow at Scripps. Institute of Oceanography at the University of California, San Diego, in a statement.
This is particularly evident in high-resolution satellite images of eddies in Earth’s oceans revealed by plankton blooms that act as a flow-tracker.
Mapping the magnetic field of Jupiter
Juno’s data also helps scientists determine Jupiter’s magnetic field, including the Great Blue Spot. This region is a magnetic anomaly located at Jupiter’s equator, not to be confused with the Great Red Spot, an atmospheric storm dating back to the millennium south of the equator.
Since Juno’s arrival at Jupiter, the team has seen a change in Jupiter’s magnetic field. The Great Blue Spot moves east about 2 inches (5.1 cm) per second and it will orbit the planet in 350 years.
Meanwhile, the Great Red Spot is moving west and will cross the finish line faster, in about 4.5 years.
But the Great Blue Spot is riven by the jet streams of Jupiter, giving it a striped appearance. This visible pattern tells scientists that these winds extend much deeper into the planet’s gaseous interior.
The map of Jupiter’s magnetic field, generated by Juno data, revealed that the motion of the planet’s dynamo, which creates the magnetic field inside Jupiter, comes from metallic hydrogen under a layer of “rain”. helium”.
Juno was also able to notice a very faint ring of dust around Jupiter from within the ring. In fact, this dust consists of two of the planet’s small moons, Metis and Adrastea. The observations allowed the researchers to view part of the constellation Perseus from a different planetary angle.
“It’s quite impressive to be able to look at these familiar constellations from a spacecraft 500 million kilometers away,” Heidi Becker, co-principal investigator on the Juno Stellar Reference Unit instrument at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, California, said in a statement. .
“But everything is almost the same when we enjoy it from our own backyards here on Earth. It is a wonderful reminder of how small we are and how much we have to explore.