Stunning new images from the Hubble Space Telescope are giving us a jaw-dropping look at auroras on the planet Jupiter.
The massive auroras appear to be at least twice the size of the planet’s famous Great Red Spot.
The auroras were spotted using the Hubble’s ultraviolet capabilities, which released the images on Thursday, June 30, 2016.
These auroras are very dramatic and among the most active ever seen on the planet, almost twice the size of the Great Red Spot. It almost seems as if Jupiter is throwing a firework party for the imminent arrival of Juno.
Jupiter’s auroras were first discovered by the Voyager 1 spacecraft in 1979.
Aurora’s on Jupiter are created the same way they are on Earth, when high energy particles enter a planet’s atmosphere near its magnetic poles and collide with atoms of gas. But unlike auroras on Earth, those on Jupiter, which are hundreds of times more energetic, never cease.
Hubble’s observations of the auroras are perfectly timed to collaborate with the Juno Space probe, which will spend nearly a year circling Jupiter’s poles and peering through clouds to scrutinize the planet’s southern and northern lights.