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The Juno probe from NASA reveals that the amount of water in Jupiter’s atmosphere is three times that of the sun

NASA’s Juno probe reveals that the amount of water in Jupiter’s atmosphere is three times that of the sun, suggesting that the gigantic planet was probably the first to form in the solar system

  • In 1995, NASA’s Galileo probe discovered that Jupiter was much drier than the sun
  • Now Juno used new technology that allowed data to be collected deeper into the planet
  • The Microwave Radiometer was able to probe 93 miles into the atmosphere
  • Juno found that it contains three times as many water molecules as the sun
  • Jupiter was probably the first to form and did not absorb the dust in the sun

NASA’s Juno has just granted the wish of many scientists – an accurate estimate of the total amount of water in the atmosphere of Jupiter

Data show that water makes up about 0.25 percent of the molecules in the planet’s atmosphere on its equator – that’s three times that of the sun.

Prior to Juno, the Galileo probe sent back data suggesting that Jupiter can be dramatically dry compared to the sun.

The new findings suggest that Jupiter was probably the first planet to form in our solar system and consist of gas and dust that has not been absorbed into the sun.

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NASA's Juno has just accepted the wish of many scientists - an accurate estimate of the total amount of water in the atmosphere of Jupiter. Data shows that water makes up about 0.25 percent of the molecules in the planet's atmosphere on its equator - that is three times that of the sun

NASA’s Juno has just accepted the wish of many scientists – an accurate estimate of the total amount of water in the atmosphere of Jupiter. Data shows that water makes up about 0.25 percent of the molecules in the planet’s atmosphere on its equator – that is three times that of the sun

Juno lead researcher Scott Bolton said: ‘Juno’s surprising discovery that the atmosphere was not well mixed, even far below the cloud tops, is a puzzle that we are still trying to figure out. No one would have guessed that water is so variable all over the planet.

The amount of water was collected during the first eight scientific flybys from Juno, which focused on the equator of the giant planet “because the atmosphere there seems to be much better mixed, even at depth, than in other regions,” NASA explains in a statement.

From this area, Juno’s microwave radiometer (MWR) was able to probe much deeper (93 miles) into the atmosphere than Galileo, allowing it to capture a more accurate amount.

However, after an analysis of an infrared map made by Galileo in 1995, with data from a telescope on the ground, experts think that Galileo has just taken a sample of “an unusually dry and warm meteorological site on Jupiter.”

Prior to Juno, the Galileo probe sent back data suggesting that Jupiter can be dramatically dry compared to the sun. The new findings suggest that Jupiter was probably the first planet to form in our solar system and consist of gas and dust that has not been absorbed into the sun

Prior to Juno, the Galileo probe sent back data suggesting that Jupiter can be dramatically dry compared to the sun. The new findings suggest that Jupiter was probably the first planet to form in our solar system and consist of gas and dust that has not been absorbed into the sun

Prior to Juno, the Galileo probe sent back data suggesting that Jupiter can be dramatically dry compared to the sun. The new findings suggest that Jupiter was probably the first planet to form in our solar system and consist of gas and dust that has not been absorbed into the sun

Cheng Li, a Juno scientist at the University of California, Berkeley, said: “We have found that the water in the equator is larger than what the Galileo probe has measured.”

“Because the equatorial region at Jupiter is very unique, we have to compare these results with the amount of water in other regions.”

The MWR is equipped with six antennas that are able to measure the air temperature at multiple depths simultaneously.

The measured temperatures are used to limit the amount of water and ammonia in the deep atmosphere, since both molecules absorb microwave radiation.

Juno’s 24th flyby from Jupiter took place on Tuesday, February 17 and the next one will take place on April 10.

“Every passing science is a journey of discovery,” said Bolton.

“There’s always something new with Jupiter. Juno has taught us an important lesson: we must approach a planet from up close and personal to test our theories. “

WHAT IS THE BIG RED SPOT FROM JUPITER?

Jupiter’s Great Red Spot is a giant oval of crimson clouds in the southern hemisphere of Jupiter that race counter-clockwise around the circumference of the oval.

The biggest storm in the solar system, it looks like a deep red sphere surrounded by layers of pale yellow, orange and white.

Trapped between two jet streams, the Great Red Spot is an anti-cyclone that swirls around a center with high atmospheric pressure, turning it in the opposite direction to hurricanes on Earth.

Jupiter's Great Red Spot is a giant oval of crimson clouds in the southern hemisphere of Jupiter that race anticlockwise around the perimeter of the oval

Jupiter's Great Red Spot is a giant oval of crimson clouds in the southern hemisphere of Jupiter that race anticlockwise around the perimeter of the oval

Jupiter’s Great Red Spot is a giant oval of crimson clouds in the southern hemisphere of Jupiter that race anticlockwise around the perimeter of the oval

Winds in the storm have been measured at several hundred kilometers per hour, with windstorms greater than any storm on Earth, NASA astronomers have said.

At the end of the 19th century it was estimated to be around 35,000 miles (about 56,000 km) in diameter – wide enough for four earths to fit side by side.

The Great Red Spot, which measures 10,000 miles (16,000 kilometers) from April 3, 2017, is 1.3 times as wide as the earth and gradually shrinks over time.

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