Jupiter’s Great Red Spot might disappear in the next 20 years If you’ve seen any picture of Jupiter you’ve no doubt noticed the massive red oval-shaped spot on its surface. Anticyclones merge with each other. The Great Red Spot is one of the most recognizable features in Jupiter’s atmosphere and the entire Solar System. But it won’t always be there. In the last 10 years, but in the last five months in particular, the press has reported dire warnings that the Great Red Spot of Jupiter is dying. Pictures from space! This suggests Jupiter's Great Red Spot (GRS) has been raging for centuries. Please deactivate your ad blocker in order to see our subscription offer. In spring 2019, when the “flaking” was observed, the Great Red Spot was also observed to merge with a series of small clouds (likely small anticyclones) on its northwest side. In a recent story, Business Insider spoke with Glenn Orton, a lead Juno mission team member and planetary scientist at NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), about the giant storm's fate. According to observations taken in the 1800s, the Great Red Spot was once about four times the diameter of Earth. In the last 10 years, but in the last five months in particular, the press has reported dire warnings that the Great Red Spot of Jupiter is dying. Unidentified Object Falls From Sky in India 00:36. Anticyclones on this gas giant act similar to cyclones that we experience on Earth, but they have twice the wind speed. Based on the spot’s interactions with other vortices my Berkeley group found there is no evidence that that vortex itself has changed its size or intensity. Data on Jupiter's crimson-colored spot reveals that this shrinking is still occurring. "The GRS will in a decade or two become the GRC (Great Red Circle)," Orton said. Why does Jupiter's great red spot exist? Philip Marcus, Professor of Mechanical Engineering, University of California, Berkeley. The Great Red Spot (GRS) is an anti-cyclonic(rotates counter-clockwise) storm that is located 22° south of Jupiter’s equator. The numerical calculations of my Berkeley research group show that the recent observations of cloud shedding can be explained by the collision of undigested red clouds at the edge of the Great Red Spot with stagnation points produced during a close encounter with a cyclone. Just because a photo is real doesn't mean its caption is. The Great Red Spot has been a fixture of Jupiter 's cloudy visage for centuries and is among the most recognizable features in the solar system. The spot is over 40,000 km in diameter, and could be seen easily with a telescope from your backyard. For more than a century astronomers documented the motions of cloud-covered anticyclones as they slowly drifted across Jupiter. Jupiter's Great Red Spot is dying. NASA revealed today that the iconic Great Red Spot on Jupiter has shrunk to its smallest size ever – and astronomers have no idea why. Follow Doris Elin Salazar on Twitter @salazar_elin. New dissipative activity is shrinking and may be destabilizing this famous feature in Jupiter’s atmosphere. The Red Spot is one of the most iconic images in astronomy. Here's what the president said hours before right-wing extremists breached the Capitol. The iconic Great Red Spot of Jupiter may disappear in the next 20 years, according to a researcher at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) in California. However, by assuming that these observable vortices interact with cloud-free (and unobservable) cyclones, we can explain the abrupt changes. Over the past week, amateur astronomers around the world have seen some unusual activity around the solar system's largest and longest-lasting storm. NASA planetary scientist Glenn Orton said the Great Red Spot has been dying since the 1800s. No, A Nurse in Alabama Did Not Die from COVID-19 Vaccine. A (false color) series of images capturing the repeated flaking of red clouds from the GRS in the Spring of 2019. Amy discusses new research that might hold the key. The Great Red Spot  could disappear in the next 2 decades Jupiter's Great Red Spot is an anticyclone that swirls around a center of high atmospheric pressure. However, some astronomers believe, to … Space is part of Future US Inc, an international media group and leading digital publisher. The high altitude of the compounds may also contribute to the coloring of the Great Red Spot. Anticyclones appear as bright clouds and so are easily detectable, but cyclones (except at the poles) often have filamentary clouds or no clouds at all. While the reddish-hued storm is massive, it was once much larger. Jupiter and the cyclonic feature known as the Great Red Spot, lower right, in 2019. One of Jupiter's most recognisable features, the Great Red Spot, is getting smaller. Neither the mergers that created the lumps nor the close encounters with cyclones are unusual by themselves, but it is not that common for them to occur at the same time. We discovered that the area of the spot cloud is larger than its underlying vortex, the swirling gas that defines it. Our image of the day, Future astronauts could use methane to make rocket fuel on Mars, The Stingray nebula is fading fast, Hubble telescope photos reveal, How satellites are stopping deforestation in Africa. In the last 10 years, but in the last five months in particular, the press has reported dire warnings that the Great Red Spot of Jupiter is dying. Pieces of the red cloud scatter outward from the stagnation point, appearing as flakes and blades. Think of two fire hoses aimed at each other so that their streams of water collide – the streams momentarily halt at the point of impact (the stagnation point) and then scatter outward. Persisted for centuries, the spot could disappear forever in as little as 20 years, predicted scientists. In a report from Space.com, astronomers from around the world say they’ve documented an uptick in what they describe as ‘blades’ … Did the Moon Briefly ‘Disappear’ 1,000 Years Ago? The question then becomes: Does a decrease in the area of the cloud mean that the vortex itself is shrinking? This article by Philip Marcus is republished here with permission from The Conversation. Watch: Strong Winds Send Canopy Flying 00:34. The Great Red Spot, located in the southern hemisphere, holds title as Jupiter’s largest anticyclone; spanning 12,500 miles wide, it is large enough to swallow Earth two to three times over. Did US Capitol Police Officer Take a Selfie With Rioter? Follow us @Spacedotcom, Facebook and Google+. In the earliest image, the flaking is predominant on the east side of the giant red vortex. There was a problem. Did ‘The Simpsons’ Predict Pro-Trump Horned Rioter Jake Angeli? Image source: NASA/JPL. Read the original article. But now scientists predict it could disappear forever in as little as 20 years. Hypotheses supported by laboratory experiments suppose that the color may be caused by chemical products created from the solar ultraviolet irradiation of ammonium hydrosulfide and the organic compound acetylene, which produces a reddish material—likely complex organic compounds called tholins. Recent images showed more cloud shrinkage, leading to headlines that the spot could die within 20 years. Over the past couple decades, Jupiter's Great Red Spot has gotten visibly smaller. The flake then breaks off from the GRS, but a new flake starts to detach in the fifth image. However, anticyclones repel cyclones. Jupiter’s Great Red Spot may be dying, and could disappear within our lifetimes . The Great Red Spot of Jupiter as … Typically, small anticyclones are not “digested” immediately, but produce lumps on the spot’s boundary that orbit around it, slowly migrating into the center. (Image credit: NASA/SwRI/MSSS/Gerald Eichstädt/Seán Doran/. Scientists had even make some assumptions that it might disappear entirely over two decades. Were Pro-Trump Mobs Storming the Capitol on Jan. 6 Actually Antifa? However, neither event is a sign of ill health for the Great Red Spot. Jupiter's Great Red Spot Could Disappear Soon 00:37. The scientist even warned “nothing lasts forever”as the … It rotates counterclockwise, the opposite direction of hurricanes on Earth. In the late 1800s, the storm was perhaps as wide as 30 degrees longitude, Orton said. [Jupiter's Great Red Spot in Photos]. Does Video Show Capitol Police Opening Gates for Rioters? Visit our corporate site. Jupiter’s great red spot, an immense storm on the fifth planet, more significant than the dimension of the Earth, has been raging since approximately 1830. A famed medieval transcript described the Earth’s lunar companion as “wholly gone.”. But it won't always be there. Concerns for the Great Red Spot’s “health” arose when astronomers realized that the cloud’s area in 1979 was only half of its size in the 1800s, as determined from old photographic plates. Some reports from May, however, started detailing that it was beginning to diminish. Viral Post ‘How To Fight Covid at Home’ Provides Problematic Advice. Join our Space Forums to keep talking space on the latest missions, night sky and more! It’s so big that it could easily engulf our entire planet. It has been around for at least hundreds of years, but is it now nearing its end? July 26, 2019 By Joe Bergeron Filed Under: Solar System. Jupiter’s Great Red Spot Isn’t Disappearing. In 1979, when two Voyager spacecraft flew close by Jupiter, images showed that the spot was a red cloud that rotated as part of a huge vortex several times larger than the Earth. NY 10036. When the nuclear-powered spacecraft Voyager 2 flew by Jupiter in 1979, however, the storm had shrunk to a bit more twice the width of our own planet. Changes in their speeds were often abrupt and seemed to occur for no reason. The massive storm — larger than Earth itself — was first spotted in 1830, and observations from the 1600s also revealed a giant spot on Jupiter's surface that may have been the same storm system. Did David Bowie Say He Supports Fascism and Call Hitler a ‘Rock Star’? That works out to more than 35,000 miles — four times the diameter of Earth. How do we know that Jovian cyclones exist when clouds are not visible? Scientists predict Jupiter's Great Red Spot (sometimes called the 'Red Eye') is unraveling and could disappear forever in as little as 20 years. An enhanced image of Jupiter's Great Red Spot, as seen by NASA's Voyager 2 probe on July 7, 1979. Jupiter's south equatorial belt, now missing, crosses the Great Red Spot in a picture taken in 2000 by NASA's Cassini orbiter. It is difficult to determine the relationship between the cloud’s size and the vortex’s size or even how Jovian clouds form and dissipate. "Maybe sometime after that the GRM," by which he means the "Great Red Memory.". Image credit: Anthony Wesley. An illustration comparing the size of Jupiter's Great Red Spot to that of Earth. Get breaking space news and the latest updates on rocket launches, skywatching events and more! You will receive a verification email shortly. Indeed, Jupiter's atmosphere is a mysterious place which would benefit from exploration. The Great Red Spot (GRS) is a giant anticyclonic storm rotating counterclockwise in the southern hemisphere of the planet (22 degrees south of Jupiter’s equator). Any cloud or undigested lump on the spot that encounters a stagnation point will similarly shatter and flake away in opposite directions. Please refresh the page and try again. What better way to begin exploring the fundamental physics and math of fluid dynamics than to study the Great Red Spot? How did it form? (Image: © NASA/JPL/Björn Jónsson/Seán Doran/. I believe that the shedding of clouds from the spot as “flakes” and “blades” observed in 2019 was due to two simultaneous events: undigested lumps of merged anticyclones traveling along the spot’s boundary and a close encounter with one or more “unobservable” cyclones. In the last 10 years, but in the last five months in particular, the press has reported dire warnings that the Great Red Spot of Jupiter is dying. Original article on Space.com. Future US, Inc. 11 West 42nd Street, 15th Floor, Jupiter’s atmosphere contains vortices besides the Great Red Spot, some of which are useful for monitoring its health. I have been intrigued by the Great Red Spot since 1979, when I viewed the Voyager images only days after NASA processed them. When a large anticyclone and smaller cyclone approach each other before repelling, they create a “stagnation” point near the boundary of the anticyclone where the local winds abruptly change direction, going off approximately perpendicular to their original directions. Jupiter’s Great Red Spot is iconic, the largest and longest-lasting storm ever seen in the solar system. Jupiter's emblematic feature might disappear in a decade or two. The Disappearing Great Red Spot. The iconic Great Red Spot of Jupiter may disappear in the next 20 years, according to a researcher at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) in California. Did Democratic Congressman Add ‘A-Woman’ to Opening Prayer? A known white nationalist recorded the clip that went viral amid the chaos of the... Did Trump Tell Supporters to Storm US Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021? This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Jupiter 's iconic Great Red Spot is disappearing. However, some astronomers believe, to … No one knows, for instance, why the Great Red Spot is red—or what has sustained the raging storm for so many years. This material may not be reproduced without permission. February … Jupiter’s Great Red Spot: A Swirling Mystery Space Chat with Space.com: Tune in Fridays for science, space and more! Snopes and the Snopes.com logo are registered service marks of Snopes.com. One of the solar system’s most iconic landmarks is about to vanish. Did Olive Garden Revoke Hannity’s Pasta Pass After Capitol Riot? As of April 3, 2017, the GRS spanned the width of 10,159 miles (16,350 kilometers), less than 1.3 times Earth's diameter.The longest storm on Earth lasted 31 days, but Jupiter can sustain longer storms because the gas planet has tens of thousands of miles of atmosphere, and spins much faster than Earth. 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