Flight over Jupiter’s infrared cyclones. New data from the Juno probe

Scientists working on the Juno mission have created a three-dimensional video showing the densely packed cyclones and anticyclones that permeate Jupiter’s north pole regions. At a meeting in Vienna, where the animation was presented, the researchers also reported the latest findings on the planet’s magnetic field and atmosphere.

Scientists on the Juno mission, thanks to data collected by the Jovian InfraRed Auroral Mapper (JIRAM) instrument installed on the probe, have generated trojdimensional animation of the flight over poJupiter’s north pole. JIRAM captures infrared radiation emerging from the depths of Jupiter rowno well at night, as well as during the day. The instrument surveys the atmospheric layer between 50 and 70 kilometersoin below the apex of theoin the planet’s clouds.

With the animation, researchers will be able to better understand the forces at the poles poThe northern part of the planet, whichory is dominated by a huge central cyclone surrounded by eight other circumpolar cyclones with diameters ranging from 4,000 to 4,600 kilometersow.

– Before Juno, we could only guess what Jupiter’s polar regions might look like – said Alberto Adriani, an astrophysicist coolaborating on the Juno mission with the Institute for Space Astrophysics and Planetology in Rome. – Now, as Juno flies over the poles in close proximity, we can collect infrared pattern imagesoin Jupiter’s weather and its massive cyclonesoin with unprecedented detailołami – added.

Scientists involved in the Juno mission presented an animation and the results of their research at the Og AssemblyoAt the European Geosciences Union meeting in Vienna. Another problem, whichory omowili, were the latest speculations of the scientific teamow on the composition of the interior of the gas giant. One of the biggest achievements in this regard was understanding how Jupiter’s deep interior rotates.

– Before Juno, we couldn’t rozrożnić extreme models of the rotation of Jupiter’s interior, to which theorych data were collected by observations from Earth and other space missions. But the Juno probe is different – it orbits the planet from pole to pole and comes closer to Jupiter than any spacecraft has before. Thanks to the incredible increase in accuracy resulting from Juno’s gravity data, we have essentially solved the question of the rotation of Jupiter’s interior. Zones and belts, whichore we see in the atmosphere rotating with rowith high velocities, reaching up to about 3,000 kilometersoin depth. At this point, the wateror becomes sufficiently conductive to be pulled into near-uniform rotation by the planet’s strong magnetic field – said Tristan Guillot working on the Juno mission from the Universite Cote d’Azur in Nice.

The same data used to analyze Jupiter’s rotation include information about the structure and composition of the planet’s interior. – Lack of knowledge about the interior’s rotation severely limited the ability to study the deep interior. Now our work can really begin in earnest – determining the interior of the solar system’s largest planet, Guillot said.

During the meeting, deputy mission science director Jak Connerney of the Space Research Corporation presented the first detailedoA picture of the dynamo or motor driving Jupiter’s magnetic field (Magnetohydrodynamic Dynamo Theory). Connerney along with cooThe researchers developed a new model of the magnetic field from measurementsow taken during eight flybysoIn the scientific over Jupiter probe Juno. In this wayob have obtained maps of the magnetic field at the surface and in the area below the surface, where researchers believe the dynamo is formed. Since Jupiter is a gas giant, its surface is defined by the planet’s radius, which is about 71,450 kilometersow.

The data presented at the meeting represent a huge advance in knowledge about the Solar System‘s largest planet. They will allow better planning of the Juno probe’s other scientific flybys. – Jupiter’s magnetic field is unlike anything we’ve seen before. This is a new era of planetary dynamo research – noted Connerney.

Map created by the teamoConnerney’a reveals unexpected irregularities, areas with surprising magnetic field strengths. It also proves that Jupiter’s magnetic field is more complex on polkula ponth than on the polk of the southern hemisphere. About halfway between the rownik vs. pole poThe northern part of the planet is an area in whichorym magnetic field is intense and positive. It is surrounded by areas thatore are less intense and negative. On poHowever, the southern hemisphere’s magnetic field is always negative, becoming increasingly intense from ropenetrates to the pole.

The Juno probe entered the gas giant’s orbit in August 2016. According to the original plan, after a twooch laps were to be followed by an orbit tightening maneuver and the probe was to be in a 14-day orbit. However, due to a malfunction related to helium valves in the main engine, theown the probe, NASA engineers decided not to undertake this risky maneuver and Juno is currently in an extended 53-day orbit and will stay there until the end of the mission.

Juno is currently completing its 11th scientific flyby of Jupiter. The probe has only completed a third of its planned program to map the planet’s. The 12th scientific flight will begin on May 24.

Jupiter is the largest planet in the solar system. Its mass is two and poł times the mass of all the other planets in our system. The gas giant has nearly 70 known moonsow. The planet is covered by several layers of clouds, ktowhich form characteristic stripes visible from our planet. A day on Jupiter lasts about 10 hours.