Probe Juno for the first time peered inside the great red spot of Jupiter

© NASA/JPL-Caltech/SwRIТрехмерное device is the Great red spot of JupiterProbe Juno for the first time peered inside the great red spot of Jupiter© NASA/JPL-Caltech/SwRI

. Space station Juno received the first data on the device is the great red spot of Jupiter and proved that his roots are deep in the bowels of the largest planet in the Solar system, the press service of the jet propulsion Laboratory of NASA.

«One of the main mysteries of the spot is how deep are its roots. As shown by data from Juno, a major hurricane in the Solar system has a width of 1.5 of the Earth, and its roots go to a depth of about 300 kilometers towards the planet’s core,» said Scott Bolton (Scott Bolton), head of mission from the southwest research Institute in boulder (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 found out later, it represents a powerful hurricane, the cyclone, whose winds move at an incredibly high speed of about 430 kilometers per hour.

The brightest region of the Great red spot, the size of which is about three Earth diameters, and the average temperature — 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 region will be one of the main goals of the Juno probe, which arrived at Jupiter in early July.

The dimensions of this spot are measured not in kilometers, and the diameter of the Earth – it is about 1.3 times wider than our planet, and the temperature difference in the warm and cold points exceeds a few hundred degrees. Today astronomers believe that the «great spot» works like a heating pad, pumping heat inside of Jupiter in its atmosphere, whose temperature is significantly higher than the values predicted by the theory.

Scientists for quite a long time wondering, where is the base of this giant hurricane monitoring from the surface or orbit of the Earth does not give unambiguous results, and data from the probe «Galileo» and its lander has led many planetary scientists to assume that the «height» of this vortex ranges from tens to hundreds of kilometers.

The first opportunity to verify these calculations appeared to astronomers only last year, when the Juno probe arrived at Jupiter and began to study his storms by microwave radar MWR. He allowed the scientists to measure the exact temperature of the different layers of the hurricane and to understand how it works.

The first session of observations, as told by Bolton, took place in July of this year, when Juno once again moved closer to Jupiter and flew a short distance from Grand spot. Scientists have measured the exact diameter of the hurricane – 16 thousand kilometers, and calculated the temperature of its legs.

«Juno has discovered that the roots of the great red spot located 50-100 times deeper than the ocean floor of Earth, and the temperature at its base is higher than at apex. As a rule, wind and other air currents arise due to the difference in temperatures, and that the lower part of the stain is warmer than its top, a good explanation of why wind moving at such a high speed in its visible part,» adds Andrew Ingersoll (Ingersol Andrew), Deputy head of mission.

Analysis of the data and subsequent flights over the spot, as I hope Bolton and Ingersol will help to understand what to expect the main spot in the future, and reveal other secrets of the largest planet of the Solar system and its record of powerful hurricanes.