Questions tagged [jupiter]

Questions regarding Jupiter, the 5th and largest planet in the Solar System.

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36
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3answers
20k views

Why does Jupiter have so many moons?

Jupiter has a great many moons - in the hundreds, and they're still being discovered. What is the current theory for where all these moons came from? Are they rocks flying through space captured by ...
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3answers
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Why don't the inner moons of Jupiter have tidally-induced volcanism?

Volcanism on Io is caused by the fact that it is tidally heated. There are four moons that are closer to Jupiter than Io with higher eccentricities, yet they don't seem to have any volcanism at their ...
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2answers
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Is Jupiter's Red Spot “locked in place” or does it move around?

A person could be forgiven when looking at Jupiter's Red Spot storm for concluding that it doesn't move. That it's geologically locked in place. But is it? I know it's a stretch to use the phrase &...
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2answers
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Is Jupiter a failed star?

The elemental make-up of Jupiter is about entirely hydrogen and helium, along with a very small fraction of the atmosphere being made up of compounds such as ammonia, sulfur, methane, and water vapor. ...
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2answers
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Why did the Comet Shoemaker-Levy-9 fragments cause such large explosions on Jupiter?

In July 1994, the comet Shoemaker-Levy 9 (D/1993 F2) tidally fragmented and these fragments collided into Jupiter, as per the image below. Image source The question is, what mechanisms resulted in ...
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1answer
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Why do some planets have rings?

Some planets, specifically Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune in our solar system, have planetary rings. Why do some planets have rings? How are they made and from what? Most importantly, will I ...
21
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4answers
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Is Jupiter made entirely out of gas?

I heard that Jupiter is made out of gas. But in school I learned that Jupiter has gravity which is 2.5 times that of Earth (Gravity that can tear apart a comet) and gravity is proportional to mass. ...
21
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6answers
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How big would the asteroid belt planet be?

As I understand it, the asteroid belt exists because the gravitational force of Jupiter prevents the asteroids from accreting (is that a word?) into a planet. If, however, Jupiter didn't exist and ...
20
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5answers
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What would the effects be on Earth if Jupiter was turned into a star?

In Clarke's book 2010, the monolith and its brethren turned Jupiter into the small star nicknamed Lucifer. Ignoring the reality that we won't have any magical ...
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2answers
712 views
+100

Why is Jupiter's Great Red Spot reddish?

The Great Red Spot is a persistent anticyclonic storm, 22° south of Jupiter's equator. Why is it reddish? From Wikipedia: It is not known exactly what causes the Great Red Spot's reddish color. Are ...
20
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1answer
2k views

What is behind the Great Red Spot's longevity?

On Earth, storms can last a few days. The Great Red Spot on Jupiter is a storm that has been going on for more than 400 years now. What is different on Jupiter that makes it possible for storms to ...
19
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1answer
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Why isn't the asteroid belt affected by Jupiter's gravitational field?

Jupiter's mass is just about a 1000th of the sun's and the asteroid belt is slightly closer to Jupiter than it is to the sun. If the heavier the object, the more curvy space is around it, why isn't ...
19
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1answer
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Did we discover 10 or 12 new moons of Jupiter?

I saw multiple news sites reporting that a team discovered 12 new Jupiter's moons: c|net - Twelve new Jupiter moons found, including one reckless one Discover - Jupiter’s Got Twelve New Moons — One ...
18
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4answers
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If Jupiter is a gas-giant then why don't its features change?

A naive question. When we look at Jupiter, we see that its features didn't change largely over many years, for instance, the red-spot. If it is composed of gases and liquids, then why aren't the ...
18
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4answers
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Jupiter FM - What are practical and inexpensive ways for the amateur detection of signals from Jupiter, especially of the transit of her moons?

What modifications to a standard AM/FM or shortwave radio are needed in order to be able to detect radio-wave signals emitted from Jupiter? Would it be possible to detect the transit of the major ...
17
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3answers
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How often are there lunar eclipses on Jupiter

For the Earth-Moon system, the orbit of the Moon is at a slight incline compared to the plane of the ecliptic. This incline is enough for there to be eclipses roughly twice a year rather than every ...
17
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1answer
2k views

Why does the solar analemma have a strange shape on Jupiter?

I'm trying to look at what the solar analemma looks like from different planets, using Stellarium. To plot the analemma, I go into the ephemeris tab of the astronomical calculations window. From there,...
17
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2answers
468 views

How was Io not torn apart by tidal forces during its formation?

Jupiter's moon Io is arguably one of the most volcanically active bodies in the Solar System. The reason, according to NASA's page Scientists to Io: Your Volcanoes Are in the Wrong Place is believed ...
15
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4answers
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Why doesn't the Sun wobble towards Jupiter instead of away from Jupiter?

This is the page I am referring to. It seems counterintuitive to me that the Sun should be on the opposite side of the barycenter's wobble. I realize I am wrong, but I cannot see why I am wrong. Can ...
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3answers
2k views

Is there any orbit at which the Roche limit can be “felt”?

Do any of the planets have a Roche limit that is strong enough to be felt by an astronaut whilst in orbit?
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2answers
2k views

During solar eclipses on Jupiter, can the moon(s)' shadow(s) on the surface be seen from Earth with a telescope?

All of the Galilean moons are large and close enough to Jupiter that they can completely eclipse the sun and allow a solar eclipse to happen. My question is can an observer from Earth, see the moon(s)...
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8answers
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Determine the moons of Jupiter through a telescope

I was doing my own "space exploration" last night with a telescope. Being a space noob I can't visually determine stars or planets (I know the moon, though), but I focused on one particularly bright ...
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3answers
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What Causes the Large Radiation Fields Around Jupiter?

I had heard that the large radiation belts around Jupiter may be formed by liquid metallic hydrogen in (or around) Jupiter's core (which Wikipedia says haven't been observed in labs yet due to the ...
15
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1answer
296 views

The compatibility of the Grand Tack hypothesis with the “core-warping impact” theory of Jupiter's diffuse core

In recent years, the Juno mission revealed that Jupiter's core was much more diffuse than astronomers had expected. One theory is that "within a few million years" of its formation, Jupiter ...
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3answers
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Is the Jupiter-Sun system considered a binary system of some type?

Since Jupiter is very massive, it is the only planet (in our solar system) that has a center of mass with the Sun that lies outside the volume of the Sun. (Source) If Jupiter was a star, they would ...
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2answers
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How can clouds form in Jupiter's atmosphere of Hydrogen and Helium?

Here is a graphic of cloud layers of Jupiter (source: Wikipedia): There are three distinct cloud layers of ammonia, ammonium hydrosulfide, and water. The temperature and pressure conditions seem to ...
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1answer
3k views

Why can't our Sun be a binary with Jupiter as a T or Y dwarf?

I just learned about Brown Dwarfs, they are "failed" stars, they narrowly missed the stellar mass mark. I learned that Y Dwarfs have temperature as low as 80 Fahrenheit (The first one found by WISE ...
13
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2answers
840 views

How can tidal heating lower Io's orbit?

This answer to the question Is Io a magic energy machine? suggests that the energy from the internal heating of Io due to tidal "squishing" as it moves cyclically closer and farther from Jupiter in ...
12
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1answer
2k views

Why do gas giants have clearly delineated surfaces, whereas the Earth's atmosphere fades into space?

I've just seen this Forbes article. Why do gas giants appear to have clearly delineated surfaces, whereas the Earth's atmosphere fades into space? Is it just a matter of scale? Or is there some ...
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3answers
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Fate of Jupiter when our sun dies

Five billion years from now, the sun will have grown into a red giant star, more than a hundred times larger than its current size. While this metamorphosis into the giant star will change the solar ...
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1answer
21k views

What will happen when landing on Jupiter?

Jupiter is a gas giant, so landing on it will not be like landing on Earth, our Moon or Mars etc., as it does not have a solid surface like these. If we have a hypothetical spaceship or probe landing ...
11
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1answer
896 views

Is it possible to see Callisto with the naked eye when it's at its greatest elongation from Jupiter?

A quick search shows that Callisto has an apparent magntidue of 5.65, which would make it easily visible under relatively dark skies. Being the farthest Galilean moon, does it ever get far away from ...
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2answers
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How do moons get captured?

A moon-sized object is running loose in the Solar System, perhaps after a planetary collision. As it approaches a planet, it's presumably following an approximately hyperbolic path. If it goes on ...
10
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1answer
224 views

Why does Saturn have a more prominent equatorial bulge and higher flattening ratio than Jupiter despite rotating slower?

It is my understanding that a planet's equatorial bulge is caused by the centrifugal force produced by its rotation, and the faster a planet rotates the bigger the bulge and flattening ratio of a ...
10
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2answers
437 views

Why is the Great Red Spot shrinking?

The Great Red Spot is an anticyclonic storm on Jupiter that is bigger than the Earth. Based on the Wikipedia article, it has been shrinking in size for the last 400 years, going from 41 to 16 thousand ...
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4answers
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Can magnetism escape a black hole?

I know light, and practically nothing but gravity can escape a black hole. My question is: can magnetism escape a black hole? A couple things that convince me it can are: Jupiter's magnetic field ...
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2answers
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What would happen if Jupiter and Earth were at the same distance as the Moon is from Earth?

If Spock came with a super machine capable of moving planets, and placed Earth so close to Jupiter as the Earth's moon, the gravity of Jupiter would make us fall into it?
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4answers
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How to calculate conjunctions of 2 planets

So, the recent conjunction of Jupiter and Venus seems to have spawned lots of excitement over this "rare" event. But what I can't figure out, is exactly how rare it is. And I've seen such conflicting ...
9
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1answer
537 views

Asteroids between Mars and Jupiter

Is the cluster of asteroids between Mars and Jupiter two dimensional as seen in every model of solar system shown in books or television? Or is it three dimensional as i think it should be?
9
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1answer
912 views

Can the asteroid belt be seen from Jupiter?

Suppose that someone lives in the neighborhood of Jupiter. He may live in a space station around Jupiter, or in any ot it's moons (I believe that it doesn't matter for this question). If this person ...
9
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1answer
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How much of a difference do good lenses make?

I recently purchased a Celestron PowerSeeker 114EQ and with it I got three lenses (which I assume are low quality), a 4mm, a 20mm and a 3 x Barlow. I can get pretty decent views of the moon but a ...
9
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1answer
488 views

Is there a strong galactic magnetic field?

My main question is: Is there a strong galactic magnetic field, perhaps driven by the supermassive black hole at the center of our galaxy? I am also wondering if this field would be strong enough to ...
9
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1answer
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Why are Saturn bands much fainter than Jupiter's?

The atmospheric composition of both planets are very similar. Then why are Jupiter's bands more visible (North and South equatorial belt, etc.): Whilst Saturn's are not: (except for the storm of ...
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2answers
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Has the conjunction between Venus, Jupiter, and Regulus only occurred twice in 2,000 years?

I recently heard the claim that mid-July, the "Star of Bethlehem" formed for the first time in 2,000 years, where the Star of Bethlehem is a three-way conjunction between Venus, Jupiter, and Regulus. ...
9
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1answer
183 views

Will Jupiter eventually stop shrinking?

Jupiter is currently shrinking due to the Kelvin-Helmholtz mechanism. Will this mechanism eventually hold or getting slower? If so, at what size of Jupiter will it stop and why? If not, what will ...
9
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1answer
117 views

Counter clockwise rotation of storms at Jupiter's north pole. What explanations have been proposed?

On Earth, high pressures and low pressures occur interchangeably. So that where two pressure systems intersect, they move the air in the same direction. But as Juno revealed the first observations of ...
9
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1answer
326 views

How was Jupiter formed

Two days ago I went to a mathematics conference where there was a paper presented on Jupiter's formation via the disk-instability model. I know that there are two different theories for the formation ...
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3answers
1k views

Gravitational acceleration inside a planet

The gravitational acceleration, g, inside the Earth generally decreases with decreasing distance to the center: However, apparently for Jupiter, the gravitational acceleration only increases with ...
8
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1answer
3k views

Size and mass of comet ATLAS (C/2019 Y4)

I read some news about this new comet and some unreliable sources said it is twice as big as Jupiter. I tried to find a reliable estimation of its size or mass, but I couldn't find anything. Would you ...
8
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1answer
5k views

Does Jupiter help to protect the Earth against comets/asteroids impacts?

Does Jupiter help to protect the Earth against comets or asteroids impacts? Some astronomers believe that one reason Earth is habitable is that the gravity of Jupiter does help protect us from some ...