Scientists have discovered how the «big spot» of Jupiter was red

© NASA, ESA, and A. Simon (GSFC)Photo of Jupiter received «Hubble» at the moment of approach of a giant planet and the EarthScientists have discovered how the «big spot» of Jupiter was red© NASA, ESA, and A. Simon (GSFC)

. The great red spot of Jupiter, a giant hurricane raging in its atmosphere for three centuries, has acquired its unusual coloration is due to cosmic rays, sulfur compounds and hydrocarbons, say scientists in articles published in the journal Icarus.

«This spot has gained a distinctive color for the reason that clouds from compounds of ammonia and sulphur can rise above it at a slightly greater height than in other regions of Jupiter. There they can mingle and interact with the acetylene, and thus become darker than other parts of the world,» explains Robert Carlson (Robert Carlson) from the jet propulsion Laboratory of NASA (USA).

The great red spot, believed to be first discovered by the Italian astronomer Giovanni Cassini: his image is found in the drawings of the scientist from 1665. As scientists have found considerably later, it is the most powerful hurricane-the cyclone, whose winds move at impossibly high speed of about 430 kilometers per hour.

The red region is the Great red spot, the size of which is about three Earth diameters, and the average temperature of -160 degrees Celsius below zero, correspond to the relatively warm core of the hurricane, which is surrounded by a colder outer vortices. The study of the mysteries of this spot is one of the main goals of the Juno probe that will arrive to Jupiter in mid-summer last year.

One of the great mysteries of this spot, says Carlson, is, in fact, the very fact that it not painted in white or «cream», and in the bright red color. Year ago colleagues of Carlson from space flight Center NASA Goddard suggested experimenting on the matter analogues of Jupiter in laboratories that stain «flushed» by the «bombing» of his matter, cosmic rays, and the appearance in it of large quantities of sulfur atoms.

Sulfur, as noted by Carlson, do colors matter analog of Jupiter in red, but in this case, the spectrum of laboratory analogue of the «red spot» is not quite similar to the data that was obtained during observations of the planet with the help of Hubble, Juno, and other scientific instruments.

This mismatch has forced Carlson to assume that in the matter of the spots contains other substances that affect its color. Mixing them with each other and irradiating beams of ultraviolet light, simulating cosmic rays, scientists have discovered that the second component of the «red paint» Jupiter was the acetylene – unsaturated hydrocarbon, contained in small quantities in the upper atmosphere of the planet.

Acetylene, as discovered by chemists from NASA, not only did the spectrum of the artificial analogue of the Large spots is more realistic, but also made it darker. This, according to Carlson, explains why other regions of Jupiter have similar coloring, large quantities of acetylene are present only inside the hurricane, whereas sulfur compounds and ammonia occur in virtually all parts of the giant planet.

Similar to the results of calculations, as noted chemist, in General, correspond to the data that were obtained on the chemical composition of the spot the probe «Cassini» during his trip to Saturn. On the other hand, scientists do not exclude that in the spot there are other substances that enhance its red color.