Jupiter’s Storms: Temperatures and Cloud Colours

New thermal images from ESO’s Very Large Telescope (VLT) and other ground-based telescopes show swirls of warmer air and cooler regions never seen before within Jupiter’s Great Red Spot. The images enable scientists to make the first detailed weather map of the inside of the giant storm system. One observation illustrated by this image is the correspondence between a warm core within an otherwise cold storm system and the reddest colour of the Great Red Spot.

The image on the left was obtained with the VISIR on the VLT in Chile on 18 May 2008. It was taken in the infrared wavelength range of 10.8 microns, which is sensitive to Jupiter's atmospheric temperatures in the 300 to 600 millibar pressure range. That pressure range is close to the altitude of the white, red and brown aerosols seen in the visible-light image on the right, which was obtained by the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope on 15 May 2008. These images show the interaction of three of Jupiter's largest storms — the Great Red Spot and two smaller storms nicknamed Oval BA and Little Red Spot.

Credit:

ESO/NASA/JPL/ESA/L. Fletcher

About the Image

Id:eso1010a
Type:Observation
Release date:16 March 2010, 22:00
Related releases:eso1010
Size:3768 x 1119 px

About the Object

Name:Jupiter
Type:• Solar System : Planet : Type : Gas Giant
• X - Solar System

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Colours & filters

BandWavelengthTelescope
Infrared
Mid-IR
10 μmVery Large Telescope
VISIR

Notes: VISIR data refers to the left image. The right image was taken by ESA/NASA HST.

 

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