James Webb Space Telescope snaps awesome, never-seen-before, Jupiter features

NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope has captured sharp images of Jupiter’s atmosphere, which has unveiled its jet stream and rotation speed.

| Updated on: Oct 20 2023, 18:07 IST
NASA's Juno mission
In a recent discovery made by NASA's James Webb Space Telescope, a never-before-seen feature in Jupiter's atmosphere was captured. (NASA/JPL-Caltech/SwRI/MSSS)
NASA's Juno mission
In a recent discovery made by NASA's James Webb Space Telescope, a never-before-seen feature in Jupiter's atmosphere was captured. (NASA/JPL-Caltech/SwRI/MSSS)

NASA's James Webb Space Telescope has yet again made an amazing discovery and this time it is about the biggest planet in the solar system Jupiter. The Webb Telescope has looked back into time by billions of years and cracked various mysteries about space and galaxies and now, its extraordinary vision has captured mesmerizing images of Jupiter's atmosphere. The images reveal various never-seen-before facts which have surprised scientists. Know what the images unfold about Jupiter.

Features of Jupiter's atmosphere by James Webb Telescope

According to a NASA report, the James Webb Telescope has made a groundbreaking discovery by capturing images of a high-speed jet stream over 4800 kilometres wide at Jupiter's equator which could give scientists new insights into Jupiter's climate and dynamics. Ricardo Hueso of the University of the Basque Country in Bilbao, Spain, said, “This is something that totally surprised us, What we have always seen as blurred hazes in Jupiter's atmosphere now appear as crisp features that we can track along with the planet's fast rotation.”

As per reports, the July 2022 images captured by James Webb Telescope's NIRCam instruments were used to study Jupiter's atmosphere. They took images of Jupiter every 10 hours for one Jupiter day, in four different filters, each capable of detecting small changes in features at different altitudes. Additionally, the James Webb Telescope was also able to tap into higher-altitude layers of the atmosphere which is 25-50 kilometres above Jupiter's cloud tops.

The speed of Jupiter's jet stream was measured at about 515 kilometres per hour which NASA says is faster than the Category 5 hurricane on Earth and Webb's sharp images and ability to see in infrared light, combined with Hubble's data, allowed scientists to detect and track this jet stream for the first time.

James Webb Space telescope

The James Webb Space Space Telescope (JWST) is the most powerful and largest space telescope ever built. It is one of NASA's Great Observatories, a collection of massive space instruments that includes the Hubble Space Telescope. Its primary function is to catch and focus light, allowing us to see farther back in time than ever before. The JWST revolves around a point in space known as the L2 Lagrange point. This is 1.5 million kilometres distant from us.

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First Published Date: 20 Oct, 17:28 IST