On Monday, researchers shared images of the largest planet in our solar system. The photographs were taken in July by the James Webb Space Telescope, which captured images of Jupiter’s northern and southern lights, as well as its whirling polar haze, in a level of detail that has never been seen before.
One of the insane wide-field pictures is especially stunning since it shows the faint rings encircling the planet as well as two small moons against a sparkling backdrop of galaxies.
1. Make way for the king of the solar system! 👑
New Webb images of Jupiter highlight the planet's features, including its turbulent Great Red Spot (shown in white here), in amazing detail. These images were processed by citizen scientist Judy Schmidt: https://t.co/gwxZOitCE3 pic.twitter.com/saz0u61kJG
— NASA Webb Telescope (@NASAWebb) August 22, 2022
“We’ve never seen Jupiter like this. It’s all quite incredible,” planetary astronomer Imke de Pater from the University of California, Berkeley, who helped conduct the observations, was quoted saying.
“We hadn’t really expected it to be this good, to be honest,” she added.
Giant news from a giant planet!@NASAWebb captured a new view of Jupiter in infrared light, uncovering clues to the planet’s inner life. Two moons, rings, and distant galaxies are visible. Get the details: https://t.co/6WKbAQY78z pic.twitter.com/9uaACCPGyU
— NASA (@NASA) August 22, 2022
According to the U.S.-French study team, the infrared photos were digitally coloured in blue, white, green, yellow, and orange so that the characteristics would be more noticeable.
#Webb has captured new images of #Jupiter! The new observations feature visible auroras that extend to high altitudes above Jupiter's northern and southern poles. Explore the new images here: https://t.co/mn366GZ6BQ pic.twitter.com/3VX2baw5gJ
— ESA Webb Telescope (@ESA_Webb) August 22, 2022
The $10 billion successor to the Hubble Space Telescope, which was developed by NASA and the European Space Agency, was launched at the end of the previous year and has been conducting infrared observations of the universe since the summer.
With the help of the James Webb Space Telescope, researchers are hoping to get a glimpse of the universe as it was 13.7 billion years ago, when the first stars and galaxies were just beginning to form.
This is truly mind blowing. And it’s only the beginning.