The Great Shrinking Red Spot

Hubble records the shrinking of Jupiter's Great Red Spot.  Credit: NASA, ESA, and A. Simon (Goddard Space Flight Center) Acknowledgment: C. Go, H. Hammel (Space Science Institute, Boulder, and AURA), and R. Beebe (New Mexico State University)

Hubble records the shrinking of Jupiter’s Great Red Spot. Credit: NASA, ESA, and A. Simon (Goddard Space Flight Center) Acknowledgment: C. Go, H. Hammel (Space Science Institute, Boulder, and AURA), and R. Beebe (New Mexico State University)

The famous Red Spot on Jupiter is shrinking and thanks to this great look from Hubble we can see exactly how much.

Just look at Jupiter though, stunning!

From Hubblesite:

Jupiter’s monster storm, the Great Red Spot, was once so large that three Earths would fit inside it. But new measurements by NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope reveal that the largest storm in our solar system has downsized significantly. The red spot, which has been raging for at least a hundred years, is only the width of one Earth. What is happening? One possibility is that some unknown activity in the planet’s atmosphere may be draining energy and weakening the storm, causing it to shrink. The Hubble images were taken in 1995, 2009, and 2014.

3 thoughts on “The Great Shrinking Red Spot

  1. Are you sure it is not caused by the man made green house gas release that is causing global climate change here on earth. :-)

  2. My educated guess is that the storm is shrinking for reasons similar to how Earth storms end, by running out of energy. The life of a storm is obviously quite different on a gas giant like Jupiter, but it would not be realistic to expect an atmospheric feature like the Red Spot to remain unchanged forever.

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