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Juno helps to find changes in Jupiter magnetic field



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Juno helps to find changes in Jupiter magnetic field

NASA / JPL-Caltech / Harvard / Moore et al.

Once again NASA's Juno spacecraft has proved to be worthy of another exciting discovery. Juno's hard-working team has made the first tangible perception of an internal magnetic field changing over time on another planet.

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This phenomenon is called a secular variation and will help scientists to understand more about the composition of the interior of Jupiter. Juno has decided that it is likely that secular variation is driven by the deep atmospheric winds of the planet.

Detailed detailed data results

Details of the discovery were published in the journal Nature Astronomy. "A secular variation has been on the wishes of planetary scientists for decades," said Scott Bolton, chief researcher of Juno from the Southwest Research Institute in San Antonio.

"Just because of Juno's highly accurate scientific instruments and the unique nature of Juno's orbit, he's transported him low over the planet as he travels from the pole to the pole, which he could & # 39 This finding occurs.

To understand a magnetic field requires very detailed observations. In order to collect enough data, NASA used information from Jupiter productions (Pioneer 10 and 11, Voyager 1 and Ulysses) with a model of Jupiter magnetic field created from data collected by Juno during its multiple bases from Junior.

Juno is worthy again

The data was collected using a specialist piece of equipment called a magnetometer – capable of producing a detailed three-dimensional map of the magnetic field. Of particular interest to NASA are the small but identifiable differences in the magnetic field that they could observe by looking at the data over time.

"Finding something as short as these changes in something as tremendous as Jupiter's magnetic field was a challenge," says Kimee Moore, Juno scientist from Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

"Having a baseline of close observations over four decades gave us enough data to confirm that the Jupiter magnetic field changes over time."

Jupiter's strong winds are key to field changes

Now that they had experienced secular variation, the team was curious to decide exactly why. Jupiters seem to be famous atmospheric or recurring winds providing the best explanation for this change in the magnetic field.

The powerful winds stretch from the planet's surface to over 3,000 kilometers deep and are to shear the magnetic fields, extending them and transporting them around the planet. Jupiter has one place where this is most obvious, in a place called the Blue Blue Belt of the planet.

This ‘fan’ has an intense magnetic field located near the equator of the planets. This intense field and strong local winds make the Blue Spot an area where the largest secular variations were recorded.

It is amazing that one narrow magnetic hot spot, the Great Blue Spot, could be responsible for almost all of Jupiter's secular variations, but the numbers are thrown out, "Moore said.

With this new understanding of magnetic fields, during the passing of science in the future, we will begin to create a planetary map of Jupiter secular variation. It can also have applications for scientists who are studying the Earth's magnetic field, which still contain lots of mysteries to solve. "

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