Jupiter has a storm that has created an angry-looking dragon eye within its mysterious and complex cloud systems.
As with cloud-gazing on Earth, there’s a lot of interpretation to be done here. While some people agreed that it looks like a massive dragon others saw a Pterodactyl and one Twitter users suggested it looks like Gollum from the 1977 animated Hobbit movie.
If you can’t see how anyone arrived at a dragon then Twitter user Astro Yuki can help, he drew on the outline that makes it much more obvious.
Juno’s camera is interesting in itself because it’s not part of the spacecraft’s official science payload. Instead it offers some extra data that can produce absolutely stunning images.
Designed to be used in collaboration with data provided by the public. Anyone with an interest in astronomy can request NASA take a shot of Jupiter at a specific time with the community voting on which to approve.
This is because NASA doesn’t have the capacity to take photos constantly and transfer that considerable data back to earth. The probe can only send back about 40Mb of data every 11 days.
That means we can receive somewhere between 10 to 100 pictures from the probe in an orbital period. The exact number depends on the compression level of the images.
Juno’s mission has been extended slightly. Originally intended to end in 2018 NASA has confirmed it will continue to operate the probe until 2021 when it will safely deorbit Juno and the probe will burn up in Jupiter’s atmosphere.
The probe has had some problems over its lifetime. Sticking helium valves caused NASA to change the orbital position of Juno reducing the number of close flybys the probe can achieve.
What did you see in the clouds of Jupiter? Let us know in the comments below.
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