On October 24, NASA’s Juno spacecraft completed its ninth close pass over the gas giant. That’s exciting news for scientists, of course, but their discoveries typically take longer to announce. But for those of us who like our gratification a little more instantaneous, the close flyby brought another boon: a whole new batch of absolutely stunning photographs of the largest planet in our solar system.
The image was taken on October 24, as Juno performed its ninth close flyby of Jupiter.
At the time the image was taken, the spacecraft was 33,115 kilometres from the tops of the clouds of the planet at a latitude of minus 52.96 degrees.
Launched on August 5, 2011, from Cape Canaveral, Florida, Juno arrived in orbit around Jupiter on July 4, 2016.
Due to solar conjunction on Jupiter, the confirmation was delayed by several days and data returned only on October 31.
Solar conjunction is the period when the path of communication between Earth and Jupiter comes into close proximity with the Sun.
During this period, no new instructions are sent or received from Juno, as it can corrupt the information due to interference from charged particles from the Sun.