Jupiter

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Jupiter : the largest of the planets and fifth in order from the sun — Webster

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Jupiter is the fifth planet from the Sun and the largest in the Solar System. It is a giant planet with a mass one-thousandth that of the Sun, but two and a half times that of all the other planets in the Solar System combined. Jupiter is a gas giant, along with Saturn, with the other two giant planets, Uranus and Neptune, being ice giants. Jupiter was known to astronomers of ancient times. The Romans named it after their god Jupiter.

Jupiter is primarily composed of hydrogen with a quarter of its mass being helium, though helium comprises only about a tenth of the number of molecules. It may also have a rocky core of heavier elements, but like the other giant planets, Jupiter lacks a well-defined solid surface. Because of its rapid rotation, the planet’s shape is that of an oblate spheroid (it has a slight but noticeable bulge around the equator). The outer atmosphere is visibly segregated into several bands at different latitudes, resulting in turbulence and storms along their interacting boundaries. A prominent result is the Great Red Spot, a giant storm that is known to have existed since at least the 17th century when it was first seen by telescope. Surrounding Jupiter is a faint planetary ring system and a powerful magnetosphere. Jupiter has at least 67 moons, including the four large Galilean moons discovered by Galileo Galilei in 1610. Ganymede, the largest of these, has a diameter greater than that of the planet Mercury. — Wikipedia

David Darling’s Internet Encyclopedia of Science, Britannica

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Jupiter News -- ScienceDaily Jupiter Research. From Hubble's latest pictures of Jupiter's new red spot to astronomy articles on Jupiter's moons, learn all the Jupiter facts here.

  • Distant moons may harbor life
    on June 15, 2018 at 1:36 am

    Researchers have identified more than 100 giant planets that potentially host moons capable of supporting life. Their work will guide the design of future telescopes that can detect these potential moons and look for tell-tale signs of life, called biosignatures, in their atmospheres. […]

  • First interstellar immigrant discovered in the...
    on May 21, 2018 at 1:27 pm

    A new study has discovered the first known permanent immigrant to our solar system. The asteroid, currently nestling in Jupiter's orbit, is the first known asteroid to have been captured from another star system. […]

  • Water plumes on Jupiter's moon Europa?
    on May 15, 2018 at 12:57 pm

    Scientists re-examining data from an old mission bring new insights to the tantalizing question of whether Jupiter's moon Europa has the ingredients to support life. The data provide independent evidence that the moon's subsurface liquid water reservoir may be venting plumes of water vapor above its icy shell. […]

  • Mars growth was stunted by early giant planetary...
    on May 7, 2018 at 12:48 pm

    An astrophysics team explains why the growth of Mars was stunted by an orbital instability among the outer solar system's giant planets in a new study on the evolution of the young solar system. The study builds on the widely accepted Nice Model, which invokes a planetary instability to explain many peculiar observed aspects of the outer solar system. The research shows how planet accretion (growth) is halted by the outer solar system instability. […]

  • Hubble detects helium in the atmosphere of an...
    on May 2, 2018 at 5:18 pm

    Astronomers using the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope have detected helium in the atmosphere of the exoplanet WASP-107b. This is the first time this element has been detected in the atmosphere of a planet outside the Solar System. The discovery demonstrates the ability to use infrared spectra to study exoplanet extended atmospheres. […]