“We didn’t really expect it to be this good, frankly,” planetary astronomer Emke de Pater, professor emeritus at the University of California, Berkeley, said in a press release.
De Pater and Thierry Foucher, a professor at the Paris Observatory, have led observations of the largest planet in our solar system with the Webb telescope — itself an international endeavor by NASA with the European Space Agency and the Canadian Space Agency, NASA said.
Drawing an image that goes from orange and yellow at Jupiter’s poles to blue and violet toward the center, several images from the telescope come together to form a comprehensive composite and give Earth a look at the gas giant.
You can also see faint rings and distant galaxies “optically” in the background, according to NASA.
Jupiter’s famous Great Red Spot – a storm big enough to swallow Earth – appears white in these images.
said Heidi Hamill, a multidisciplinary web scientist for solar system observations and vice president of science at the Consortium of Universities for Research in Astronomy.
NASA said scientists have teamed up with citizen scientist Judy Schmidt to translate the data to form the telescope’s composite images, which help get a better look at Jupiter’s life.
Schmidt, who is based in Modesto, California, said it’s hard to translate Jupiter into pictures because of its fast rotation.
“This image sums up the science of our Jupiter system program, which studies the dynamics and chemistry of Jupiter itself, its rings, and its satellite system,” Foucher said.
But Jupiter isn’t the only Web topic. A space telescope uses infrared light to reveal invisible aspects of the universe.
The development of the world’s first space observatory began in 2004, and after years of delays, the telescope and its huge golden mirror were finally launched on December 25, 2021.
The telescope also detects and observes exoplanet systems, each of which consists of a planet outside our solar system and its host star.
Some of these exoplanets are potentially habitable, and gazing into their atmospheres could reveal clues in the ongoing search for extraterrestrial life.
CNN’s Ashley Strickland and Megan Marplus contributed to this report.
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