Cyclones have been observed throughout the universe as seen in the following examples:

  1. Jupiter's Great Red Spot is perhaps the most well-known cyclone in our solar system. It is a giant storm that has been raging on Jupiter's surface for at least 350 years, and it is much larger than any storm on Earth. The storm is thought to be fueled by the planet's internal heat, and it rotates counterclockwise.
  2. Saturn also has a hexagonal-shaped cyclone at its north pole, which is much larger than any storm on Earth. The storm has been observed by spacecraft since the 1980s and is thought to be caused by the planet's unique atmospheric conditions.
  3. Neptune has a series of dark spots on its surface that are thought to be cyclones, and they are often seen to be interacting with each other. Uranus also has storms on its surface, although they are less well-studied.
  4. Cyclones have also been observed on the moons of Jupiter, particularly on Io, which has hundreds of active volcanoes that can create plumes of gas that form rotating storms.
  5. Exoplanets, or planets outside our solar system, have also been observed with cyclones. In 2018, astronomers discovered a giant exoplanet called WASP-121b that has a glowing, red-hot atmosphere and a cyclone the size of the state of Texas.

What is the most common method that a scientist uses to study the cyclones in the universe?


2 Answers 2

  1. It is relatively easily to study storms on other planets. Forget advanced space telescopes. Bruh, you can hook up a rookie telescope and see Jupiter's Great Red Spot in 4K (Okay, that may have a bit of an overstatement).
  2. Saturn's Hexagon was first spotted by the Voyager probes in the late 1980s. Now, they have just exited the heliosphere and in the interstellar medium , in other words, "out" of the solar system. That's, however, only if shenanigans like the Oort Cloud don't exist. Second, the Cassini probes launched and reached Saturn in 2004, where they for the first time, imaged the Hexagon Storm in full quality.
  3. Neptune and Uranus, these two planets were only closely imaged once, by the Voyager probes in the 1980s, I think. Sure, JWST has made some imagery of it, but that's irrevelant.
  4. As for exoplanets, that is merely conceptual art and models based on what they would look like. The only exoplanet whose "color" or even just surface features have been known is HD 189733 B, and even then, the planet's color, is just cobalt-blue, revealed from polarimetry. The reason why we don't know a exoplanet's surface details exactly is due to the fact, that though telescopes are experts at capturing stars like Betelguese and heck yes, even black holes like M87 and Sgr A* in high quality, they are terribly inefficient at capturing planets. Forget trying to capture distant planets, if we were to turn around our telescopes and capture Proxima Centauri B or even just Pluto, all we would get is a fuzzy mumbo jumbo, or in Pluto's case, just a small blurry sphere. That's why the Hubble couldn't capture Pluto.
  5. Most photos of exoplanets that you see online on internet, are just CGI generated by NASA based on the semi-major axis, orbital eccentricity etc etc. Meaning that they were generated by some sort of CGI software, so as to imagine what it would most probably look like.

So to sum up, in 1st case, cyclones are studied on Jupiter and Saturn, as they are "relatively" close to the Earth, and we can easily capture their images. Neptune and Uranus, they were captured only once by the Voyager probes, and for exoplanets, they aren't actually studied, but simulations.


I don't have access that sort of list so I will only be answering the first question, that is "How are the cyclones on other planets studied?". So, there's a few ways.

First, there are space probes, often sent by NASA and other space agency to explore weather and other attributes of other planets, at least the one's in our solar system (and hopefully soon the one's not in our solar system too). They have cameras, spectrometers, and radar systems which tell scientists a lot about cyclones on other planets. For example, the Cassini mission to Saturn and the Juno mission to Jupiter have given much data on cyclones and a variety of other processes on their respective planets.

Second, there are telescopes and similar tools, used by anyone from professionals to amatuers, that can study nearly the entire observable universe for these cyclones and other phenomenon. They can also use imaging to capture detailed images of these cyclones and other occurences. It's chemical composition can be determined by spectroscopy by analyzing the light emitted, absorbed, and scattered by the cyclone or similar surface or atmospheric activities. These can share much about the dynamics and evolutions of interplanetary cyclones.

Third, there are computer models that are generally made by professionals and it is generally a much cheaper and easier method of "studying" cyclones. Other methods are still used as models may be inaccurate but they are still useful, albeit imperfect. Adding data about the planet's atmosphere (such as temperature, pressure, and wind patterns) let's scientists simulate cyclones and study their behavior and evolution. It helps them understand cyclones and make predictions about them.


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