Juno's fly-by may shed light on a Jupiter mystery

Jupiter's Great Red Spot to Be Investigated Soon

Six years since the Juno spacecraft started its journey to Jupiter it has completed or closed flyby directly over Jupiter's Great Red spot NASA has confirmed. The probe has been monitoring Jupiter's surroundings for more than a year and yesterday it covered 5,600 miles above the great storm on the planet.

Juno was launched on August 5, 2011, from Cape Canaveral, Florida.

The Great Red Spot has more than just good looks going for it. It all took place at 7:06 p.m. PDT (11:06 p.m. EDT), just days after the probe celebrated its first year of orbiting the planet. It is scheduled to make its next close pass to Jupiter on September 1.

"This monumental storm has raged on the solar system's biggest planet for centuries".

NASA is expected to combine Juno's observations with those from telescopes on Earth and in space to get the most out of the data.

"Not a lot is known", Scott Bolton, principal investigator with NASA's Juno probe, told CBS News in an interview Monday. The same image was processed and submitted to the Juno website by amateur astronomers Amadeo Bellotti and Oliver Jenkins - though their submissions are admittedly less clear and colorful than Major's work.

This illustration depicts NASA's Juno spacecraft in orbit above Jupiter's Great Red Spot.

In the meantime, enjoy the latest batch of images provided by Juno, and the savvy photo editors who turned the craft's raw image data into stunning pictures. At this time, it was about 3,500 km (2,200 mi) above Jupiter's cloud tops. How deeply the storm penetrates the lowermost atmosphere layer of the Jupiter? This was humanity's first up-close and personal view of the very big feature, the US National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) confirmed. The spacecraft passed about 9,000 kilometres above the clouds of this iconic feature. Let us know in the comment section below.

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