In 2011, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) launched a powerful space probe, called Juno Spacecraft, intended for moving all the way through Jupiter, explore its hidden features, click the views of the planet, and beam the photos back to the ground-based system of NASA. Nine months ago, Juno successfully penetrated into the orbit of solar system’s largest planet, and now the probe has beamed back a set of new stunning images of Jupiter’s poles, taken during its latest flyby. NASA has shared the most recent set of pictures, what Juno has collected during its recent flyby and they are worth-watching.
According to NASA, the images were clicked by the Juno Spacecraft during its recent flyby to Jupiter. The onboard camera of Juno probe – the JunoCam clicked the pictures on 27th March, 2017. At 2:12 a.m. PDT (5:12 a.m. EDT), when the Juno spacecraft was taking a close flyby of Jupiter, captured those spectacular views of solar system’s giant gas planet and its poles. As said by NASA, at the moment, when the pictures were taken, Juno was positioned around 12,400 miles or 20,000 kilometres over Jupiter’s cloud top. At that time, the spacecraft was moving across the planet at an estimated pace of 57.8 km/s proportionate to the largest planet of the planetary system.
In the set of six pictures, one picture highlights the stunning ‘whirling storm’ of the planet – which is one of eight supermassive gyratory storms that bear a resemblance to white ovals. The pictures, beamed back by JunoCam also highlighted the impenetrable auroras and unique cloud formations of Jupiter. Another image of the series highlights Jupiter’s South Pole. The picture is a first-of-its-kind to show up the similar appearance of Jupiter’s both poles, said NASA.
For giving the raw images a touch of master work and highlighting the whirling storm more, the famous citizen scientist Jason Major has enhanced the pictures with the addition of extra colour and contrast, which turned the photo into a Jovian masterpiece. To those unknown, Juno Spacecraft was launched on 5th August 2011, from the Florida-based Cape Canaveral Air Force Station and entered the polar orbit around Jupiter on 4th July 2016. The next flyby of Juno will be held on 19th May 2017.