[Epoch Times October 31, 2021](Epoch Times reporter Li Yan comprehensive report) The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) held a press conference this week, revealing the agency’s surprising latest discoveries on Jupiter, including How deep is the Great Red Spot, and how “resilience” is in the bipolar cyclone storm.
The Great Red Spot is a huge anticyclonic storm that has existed for a long time at 22° south of Jupiter’s equator, the largest planet in the solar system. Since 1830, it has been continuously observed for 189 years.
At a press conference on Thursday (October 28), NASA’s Juno mission chief investigator and director of the Southwest Institute’s Space Science and Engineering Department Scott Bolton said that people I used to think that the Great Red Spot was a storm that looked like a flat “pancake”.
“We know it lasted a long time, but we don’t know how deep it is or how it works,” Bolton said at a press conference.
In February and July 2019, NASA’s Juno spacecraft flew directly over the erythema twice to find out that the Great Red Spot, which is about 10,000 miles (16,000 kilometers) wide, is under the visible cloud top and its vortex extends. depth. Two papers published in the journal Science on Thursday detailed the discovery of Juno.
Scientists once thought that the depth of the Great Red Spot storm was limited to the depth at which sunlight can penetrate or water and ammonia are expected to condense, that is, the planet’s cloud height. However, the researchers found that the storm was not so shallow.
With the help of a microwave radiometer on the Juno spacecraft, the scientists made three-dimensional observations of Jupiter. They found that the depth of the Great Red Spot was between 124 miles (200 kilometers) and 311 miles (500 kilometers), extending to the depths of the gas giant, much deeper than expected.
Marzia Parisi, a research scientist at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California, said: “The depth of the Great Red Spot inside Jupiter is the same as the height of international space above us.”
The Great Red Spot has deep roots, but the team found that it is still shallower than the zonal jet that powers the storm, which is close to 1,864 miles (3,000 kilometers) deep.
While the Great Red Spot Storm continues to raging, its scale is shrinking. In 1979, the Great Red Spot was twice the diameter of the Earth. Since then, its size has been reduced by at least one third.
Resilient polar cyclone
Five years ago, scientists used image data collected by Juno to learn more about Jupiter’s poles.
Juno discovered that the gas giant had five cyclones in the Antarctic, in the shape of a pentagon, and eight cyclones in the North Pole, forming an octagon.
Five years later, when Juno used Jupiter’s infrared auroral mapping instrument to observe these cyclones, they found that these storms were still in the same location.
The explanation for this phenomenon is that when the polar cyclones try to move to the two poles, the cyclones at the top of each pole keep pushing back. One push and one pull caused the polar storm to “stand still.”
Since 2016, the Juno spacecraft, which is as wide as a basketball court, has been surrounding Jupiter, scanning the atmosphere and mapping its magnetic and gravitational fields.
In January of this year (2021), NASA announced the extension of the Juno mission to September 2025.
Editor in charge: Lin Yan#