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First Results From The Juno Mission Begin Unravelling Jupiter's Mysteries

By Editor 26 May 2017

Beneath its heavy cloud cover, Jupiter has been able to keep its secrets from astronomers. Now, first results from NASA's Juno mission are challenging researchers' beliefs about the gas giant. During those flybys, observations and data showed Jupiter's previously unseen poles. Juno was also able to probe the cloud cover and discover wells of ammonia that form giant and violent weather systems in the deep atmosphere. The mission had an encounter with the planet's "bow shock," akin to a type of stationary shockwave, when exploring Jupiter's magnetosphere. That data, combined with information to be gathered as Juno's mission continues, can help researchers determine the structure of Jupiter's atmosphere and answer the big question: Does the planet have a solid core?