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The Bruce Murray Space Image Library

Southern oval on Jupiter

Filed under pretty pictures, amateur image processing, Voyager 1 and 2, Jupiter

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Southern oval on Jupiter Voyager 1 obtained this mosaic of a southern oval about 12 hours before closest approach. In addition, two color frames obtained almost one hour earlier were used for the rightmost part of the image to get complete coverage of the easternmost part of the reddish oval that is conspicuous in this mosaic. The oval is located near latitude 60°S and is about 5000 km across. Like the Great Red Spot. it is anticyclonic.

Farther south, the south polar hood/haze is obvious. Its northern edge is usually near 66°S. It is bluish in the enhanced image here, both due to the stronger blue color (relative to red/green) in the polar hood and also because of Rayleigh scattering near the limb. Observations have shown that the top of the main cloud layer is lower in the polar regions than elsewhere.

When Voyager 1 obtained these images it was less than 1 degree south of Jupiter's equatorial plane, while the oval is located near latitude 60°S. This makes the oval highly foreshortened; in reality it is much closer to a circular shape than the images above suggest. These images were acquired at a distance of ~930,000 kilometers from Jupiter's center at a resolution of ~9 km/pixel. Color, contrast, and sharpness have been enhanced to better show various details.

NASA / JPL-Caltech / Björn Jónsson

Southern oval on Jupiter (viewed from directly above)

NASA / JPL-Caltech / Björn Jónsson

Southern oval on Jupiter (viewed from directly above)

Wide angle context view of the southern oval

NASA / JPL-Caltech / Björn Jónsson

Wide angle context view of the southern oval
This mosaic is rendered in approximately true color.

Original image data dated on or about March 4, 1979.

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License. For uses not allowed by that license, contact us to request publication permission from the copyright holder: Björn Jónsson


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