Research

Juno’s Citizen Science

The Juno mission’s JunoCam has been producing stunning photos each time the spacecraft swoops past Jupiter. The instrument has a planning team, but its primary use is for citizen scientists, who have been suggesting images to take each orbit and have been processing those images. Most of the photos we see are like the one on the left above – photos that have been heavily color-enhanced to highlight details. The image on the right shows what Jupiter would look like to the human eye. Look closely, and you’ll catch many of the same colors and shapes in both photos. 

At a recent conference, a member of JunoCam’s team presented scientific results that have come from the instrument, including analysis of Jupiter’s polar storm systems (8 vortices for the north pole and 5 for the south), tantalizing hints at Jovian equivalents to earthly cloud types, and more. She also announced a new Analysis page where members of the public can both see the science in progress and participate first-hand! (Image credit: NASA / SwRI / MSSS / G. Eichstädt / S. Doran; NASA / JPL-Caltech / SwRI / MSSS / B. Jónsson; via E. Lakdawalla; submitted by jshoer)

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