New Hubble Jupiter Maps and Ultra HD Animation Released

Posted on October 14, 2015

Flat global map of Jupiter from Hubble

New imagery of Jupiter from the Hubble Space Telescope has been released. The imagery includes new Jupiter maps and an Ultra HD animation. The two new global maps of Jupiter were made using Hubble's Wide Field Camera 3. One of the global maps is pictured above.

The HD spinning globe animation shows a filament-like feature in the core of Jupiter's Great Red Spot. It also shows that the Great Red Spot has been shrinking over the years and becoming more circular. NASA says the long axis of the storm is now 150 miles (240 kilometers) shorter than it was in 2014.



The researchers also spotted an elusive wave in Jupiter’s North Equatorial Belt. This wave had only been spotted once before by Voyager 2. NASA researchers say similar waves sometimes appear in Earth's atmosphere where cyclones are forming. They are known as baroclinic waves.

Jupiter baroclinic wave


Glenn Orton of NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, says in a statement, "Until now, we thought the wave seen by Voyager 2 might have been a fluke. As it turns out, it's just rare!"

The new imagery can be found here on nasa.gov and here on the HubbleSite.

Images: NASA, ESA, A. Simon (GSFC), M. Wong (UC Berkeley), and G. Orton (JPL-Caltech)