Picture them, which are usually violent on Jupiter, and the serene result can be hung in a gallery filled with modern abstract art. But the images taken by the unmanned Juno spacecraft have more than just aesthetic value.
For example, when oceanographer Lia Siegelman (University of California, San Diego) saw the images, she noticed that the 1,000-mile-long turbulent storms around Jupiter’s poles resembled the ocean currents she was studying for her PhD at the time. These types of currents reveal themselves in terrestrial images, among other things, thanks to the shapes that plankton groups take in seawater.
Sigelman then went on to work with a set of Juno photos, writing with her colleagues for the current issue of Trade magazine Nature Physics. In this way, researchers can, among other things, track wind speed and direction of movement of creeping clouds, capturing them in formulas from fluid physics. So that we can better understand how those dazzling blows and sweeps appear in images of Jupiter’s polar region.
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