Photo-fact. MEGAshtorm gripped the planet Saturn

The monstrous storm on Saturn, scientists have recorded the Jet Propulsion Laboratory NASA. The storm began as a small atmospheric disturbance, but gradually increased his power.

Devices NASA interplanetary probe "Cassini" orbiting Saturn, began to register the first signs of the formation of a giant storm in December last year. By observations joined by amateur astronomers.

Perturbation of the atmosphere in the northern hemisphere of the planet Saturn, which now spring ring covered the entire planet. The storm began as a small atmospheric disturbance, but gradually started to increase its scale, and eventually formed a vortex diameter of about 5000 kilometers, reminiscent of the famous Great Red Spot on Jupiter.

Powerful eddies, which are seldom seen in the stable stratosphere of Saturn, formed of hot air. These areas are lit like beacons in the infrared images.

This — the first major storm on Saturn, as recorded by NASA interplanetary probe "Cassini" and studied at thermal infrared wavelengths, where Saturn's heat energy found atmospheric temperatures, winds and composition within the disturbance.

The images were obtained by ground-based optical complex Very Large Telescope (Very Large Telescope) in Chile, and an infrared spectrometer "Cassini".

These images were obtained by January 19, 2011, during the mature phase of the northern storm. The second image in this picture taken at a wavelength that shows the structure in the lower atmosphere of Saturn, showing swirling storm clouds and the central cooler vortex. The third image is sensitive to much higher in the atmospheres of Saturn normally peaceful stratosphere, where we see the unexpected beacons of infrared emission, framing the central cool region of the storm.

Updrafts of large crystals of ammonia in the Storm Saturn. This false-color infrared image, obtained interplanetary station Cassini, shows clouds of large ammonia ice particles, and drove a powerful storm in Saturn's northern hemisphere. Large updrafts dragged ammonia gas upward more than 30 miles (50 kilometers) from the bottom. Ammonia was condensed into large crystals in the cold upper atmosphere.

Temperature Indicators Storm on Saturn. Cassini measurements of the interplanetary station show the temperatures in the high layer of the atmosphere of Saturn, known as the stratosphere and show the impact of the massive global force storm. These data from a complex infrared spectrometer Cassini, red — indicates warmer temperatures in the storm region (20 — 40 degrees latitude). They shine as stratospheric "beacons" that frame the excitement. Blue — indicates the coldest temperatures in the central region of the storm. These temperatures were measured at a wavelength of 7.7 microns. Storm is listed as yellow, demonstrating that it has a large signal and the red and green colors. This indicates that the cloud has large particles and extends upward at a relatively high altitude. Furthermore, the lack of blue in particular indicates that the storm clouds have a substantial component of ammonia crystals.

But there are other signs megashtorma on Saturn. Thus, the analysis of acetylene and phosphine in different layers of the atmosphere of Saturn showed that its gaseous envelope strongly excited. If we consider the total amount of ammonia, it becomes clear that this storm is much more powerful than the previous.

The last time a hurricane force, passing through all the northern hemisphere of the planet Saturn, seen in 90 years.

Scientists "Cassini" continues to explore the developing storm, and promise a more extensive gallery soon.


The Cassini-Huygens mission — a joint project of NASA, the European Space Agency and the Italian Space Agency. Jet Propulsion Laboratory, a division of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, manages the Cassini-Huygens mission for a division of the space programs of NASA, Washington. Interplanetary Cassini orbiter was designed, developed and assembled at JPL. Group on the video shooting, based in the Institute of Space Sciences, Boulder, Colorado. Group mapping spectrometer operating in the visible and infrared regions of the spectrum, is based at the University of Arizona.

based on NASA (translation METEOPROG)

METEOPROG closely followed not only on the weather situation on Earth, but does not avoid the attention of neighboring planets.

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