This animation takes the viewer on a simulated journey into Jupiter’s exotic high-altitude electrical storms. Get an up-close view of Mission Juno’s newly discovered “shallow lighting” flashes and dive into the violent atmospheric jet of the Nautilus cloud. The smallest white “pop-up” clouds on top of the Nautilus are about 100 km across. The ride navigates through Jupiter’s towering thunderstorms, dodging the spray of ammonia-water rain, and shallow lighting flashes. At these altitudes — too cold for pure liquid water to exit – ammonia gas acts like an antifreeze that melts the water ice crystals flung up to these heights by Jupiter’s powerful storms – giving Jupiter an unexpected ammonia-water cloud that can electrify the sky. The animation was created by combining an image of high-altitude clouds from the JunoCam imager on NASA’s Juno spacecraft with a computer-generated animation.
Video credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/SwRI/MSSS/Kevin M. Gil/Animation: Koji Kuramura/Music: Vangelis