Jupiter May Possibly Have Solid Core Beneath The Gas Surface: Latest Image From Juno Reveals

By Menahem, Zen | May 10, 2017 01:58 AM EDT

Latest image from Juno spacecraft shows that Jupiter may have a solid core beneath its thick gas surface. The spacecraft Juno made its fifth dive into the planet's cloud.

NASA revealed the latest image from Juno spacecraft as it conducted its fifth close flyby of Jupiter on March 27. The SpaceCam in Juno spacecraft captured the image from 12,400 miles (20,000 kilometers) above the planet at the speed of 129,000 miles per hour.

Due to its close proximity with Jupiter, sometimes image captured by JunoCam appears to be in odd shape. It is because the camera in Juno spacecraft was unable to capture the entire illuminated area, resulting the sides to get cut off. NASA revealed the image taken from Juno spacecraft to the public after the citizen scientist Bjorn Jonsson enhanced the image color.

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Aside from the image taken from Juno spacecraft, NASA also released another image from Hubble Space Telescope as reported by New York Times. The Hubble Space Telescope took the image when Jupiter and Earth were at the closest distance, at 415 million miles. From the very long distance, Hubble Space Telescope was able to take the full image of Jupiter.

Meanwhile, the images from Juno spacecraft show the possibility of a solid core underneath its thick gas surface. Besides taking the variety of texture in the planet's atmosphere, Juno also took the picture of four points of interests in Jupiter, which are known as the “String of Pearls,” “Between the Pearls,” “An Interesting Band Point” and the South Temperature Belt.

The picture from Juno spacecraft is expected to uncover the mystery of Jupiter, and also confirmed the theory of a solid core. For decades, scientists believed that the largest planet in our solar system has a solid surface underneath its thick cloud of gas. Based on the observation, the upper atmosphere of Jupiter is composed of hydrogen and helium with a small percentage of the other gas. 

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