NASA Tech: Ground and Space Observations

Source:  NASA - 6 cyclones on Jupiter

Place in the Universe Where the Weather is Never Pleasant

The image is one of the highest resolution, infrared views of
the Planet Jupiter ever taken.  And, the view is simply 
amazing.  Jupiter is lite up in huge thunder storms. This image is the result of the most highly advanced space technology and the scientists behind it teaming up.  NASA's Hubble Space Telescope, the Gemini Observatory in Hawaii and the Juno spacecraft came together to explore the fiercest storms in the solar system.  The location of some of the Universe's worst weather is Jupiter, more than 500 million miles from Earth. It appears weather is never pleasant there.

Stormy Weather
A team of researchers led by U-CAL Berkeley's Michael Wong are using the images coming in to learn how Jupiter's turbulent atmosphere and weather work.  Storms are constant on Jupiter and much more powerful than on Earth. The thunderheads measure forty miles from top to base.  That's five-times the average on
Earth.  And the lightning has three times more energy than the largest Super-bolts on Earth.  The Juno spacecraft is picking up
radio signals from the powerful lightning to map the bolts. 

Jupiter Has Deep Water Clouds
Hubble, high in space and Gemini, on the ground, are getting high
resolution images of Jupiter from afar to provide a wider
perspective.  They are correlating lightning storms with deep
water clouds to start estimating how much water is in Jupiter's
atmosphere.  In the search for life in space, the presence of water is the key. Jupiter's harsh weather may not preclude it from harboring some forms of life.

Search For Life
MIT astrophysicists have just discovered that life can exist in extremely inhospitable conditions. They found microorganisms
living and thriving in environments that are 100% hydrogen, where scientists never even considered the possibility of life. Many rocky exoplanets in the universe have that type of atmosphere. The MIT team is urging scientists to greatly expand the search for life in
space.  Jupiter could be another interesting candidate. For life in
space, they sky is the limit.

To take a look at journalist Edward Kane's recent books on space missions and  discoveries and great new innovations, go to
amazon.com/author/ekane   I'm the co-author.


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