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News Release Archive:

News Release 24 of 964

May 15, 2014 10:00 AM (EDT)

News Release Number: STScI-2014-24

Hubble Shows that Jupiter's Great Red Spot Is Smaller than Ever Seen Before

May 15, 2014: 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 READ: Junior version of this article Amazing Space Learn about this story in the Star Witness, a science newspaper available on our sister site, Amazing Space.   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.

Join Hubble astronomers for further discussion about Jupiter's shrinking Great Red Spot at 4pm EDT on Thursday, May 22, at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9coSaxpQ8DQ. Please bring your questions and comments.

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Photo Credit: NASA, ESA, and A. Simon (Goddard Space Flight Center)

Acknowledgment: C. Go, H. Hammel (Space Science Institute and AURA), and R. Beebe (New Mexico State University)

Science Credit: A. Simon (Goddard Space Flight Center), G. Orton (Jet Propulsion Laboratory), J. Rogers (University of Cambridge, UK), and M. Wong and I. de Pater (University of California, Berkeley)