Juno spacecraft’s 4 latest discoveries at Jupiter

1. Juno ‘hears’ Jupiter’s moon Ganymede

An audio track collected during the Juno mission’s recent close flyby of the large Jupiter moon Ganymede was a highlight shared by Juno mission scientists at 2021’s fall meeting of the American Geophysical Meeting, held shortly before Christmas in New Orleans.

At the time of Juno’s closest approach to Ganymede – during the mission’s 34th trip around Jupiter – the spacecraft was within 645 miles (1,038 kilometers) of Ganymede’s surface and traveling at a relative velocity of 41,600 mph (67,000 kph).

2.  A magnetic Great Blue Spot

Jack Connerney of NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center said at the fall AGU meeting that he and his team have produced the most detailed map yet obtained of Jupiter’s magnetic field. The map is compiled from data collected from 32 orbits during Juno’s prime mission.

The scientists said it provides new insights into the gas giant’s mysterious Great Blue Spot, a magnetic anomaly at the planet’s equator.

3. Earth’s oceans, Jupiter’s atmosphere

Lia Siegelman, a physical oceanographer and postdoctoral fellow at Scripps Institution of Oceanography at the University of California, San Diego, decided to study the dynamics of

Jupiter’s atmosphere after noticing that the cyclones at Jupiter’s pole appear to share similarities with Earth ocean vortices she studied during her time as a doctoral student.

4.  Juno image of Jupiter’s thin ring

At the fall AGU meeting, the Juno team has also released its latest image of Jupiter’s faint dust ring, taken from inside the ring looking out by the spacecraft’s Stellar Reference Unit navigation camera.

jupiter's thin ring