Information collected by NASA’s Juno spacecraft utilizing its Jovian InfraRed Auroral Mapper (JIRAM) instrument level to a brand new warmth supply near the south pole of Io that might point out a beforehand undiscovered volcano on the small moon of Jupiter.
The infrared information had been collected on Dec. 16, 2017, when Juno was about 290,000 miles (470,000 kilometers) away from the moon.
“The brand new Io hotspot JIRAM picked up is about 200 miles (300 kilometers) from the closest beforehand mapped hotspot,” mentioned Alessandro Mura, a Juno co-investigator from the Nationwide Institute for Astrophysics in Rome. “We aren’t ruling out motion or modification of a beforehand found scorching spot, however it’s troublesome to think about one might journey such a distance and nonetheless be thought of the identical characteristic.”
The Juno staff will proceed to judge information collected on the Dec. 16 flyby, in addition to JIRAM information that shall be collected throughout future (and even nearer) flybys of Io. Previous NASA missions of exploration which have visited the Jovian system (Voyagers 1 and a pair of, Galileo, Cassini and New Horizons), together with ground-based observations, have positioned over 150 energetic volcanos on Io thus far. Scientists estimate that about one other 250 or so are ready to be found.
Juno has logged practically 146 million miles (235 million kilometers) since coming into Jupiter’s orbit on July four, 2016. Juno’s 13th science move shall be on July 16.
Juno launched on Aug. 5, 2011, from Cape Canaveral, Florida. Throughout its mission of exploration, Juno soars low over the planet’s cloud tops — as shut as about 2,100 miles (three,400 kilometers). Throughout these flybys, Juno is probing beneath the obscuring cloud cowl of Jupiter and finding out its auroras to study extra in regards to the planet’s origins, construction, environment and magnetosphere.