Cylindrical Orientation of Jupiter's East-West Jet-Streams
This composite illustration depicts scientists' findings that Jupiter's atmospheric winds penetrate the planet in a cylindrical manner and parallel to the planet's spin axis. The study, published in Nature Astronomy in October 2023, used gravity data from NASA's Juno mission.
The top layer of Jupiter's atmosphere – the cloud level – was generated for this illustration using a combination of visible light images from Juno and NASA's Cassini mission. The annotated cutout reveals the gas giant's zonal winds at a depth of 1,800 miles (3,000 kilometers) below cloud level. In the cutout, Jupiter's belts are depicted with blue bands, the zones with reddish bands.
The annotated close-up view at right shows the most dominant jet recorded by Juno. At cloud level, the jet is located at 21 degrees north latitude, above the planet's equator. However, at 1,800 miles (3,000 kilometers) below cloud level the jet is positioned at 13 degrees north latitude. The dashed white line represents the location of the jet's maximum velocity at all depths, showing its cylindrical structure.
The color bar at left indicates the velocity of the zonal winds in meters per second at 1,800 miles (3,000 kilometers) below cloud level.
More information about Juno is at https://www.nasa.gov/juno and http://missionjuno.swri.edu. For more about this finding and other science results, see https://www.missionjuno.swri.edu/science-findings.