NASA’s Juno mission captured these elaborate atmospheric jets in Jupiter’s northern mid-latitude region. This detailed, color-enhanced image reveals a complex topography in Jupiter’s cloud tops. If you look closely, relatively small, bright, “pop-up” clouds — which rise above the surrounding features — stand out at the tops and edges of the swirling patterns, while the darker areas nearby reveal greater depth.
Citizen scientist Kevin M. Gill processed this JunoCam image, which was taken on April 10, 2020, at 6:37 a.m. PDT (9:37 a.m. EDT), as the Juno spacecraft performed its 26th close flyby of the planet. At the time the image was taken, the spacecraft was about 5,375 miles (8,650 kilometers) from Jupiter’s cloud tops at a latitude of about 50 degrees North. The spacecraft was traveling about 127,000 mph (204,000 kilometers per hour) relative to the planet at that time.
JunoCam’s raw images are available for the public to peruse and process into image products at https://missionjuno.swri.edu/junocam/processing.
More information about Juno is at https://www.nasa.gov/juno and https://missionjuno.swri.edu.
Image credit: Image data: NASA/JPL-Caltech/SwRI/MSSS Image processing by Kevin M. Gill © CC BY