The Great Red Spot is about twice the diameter of Earth and blows at speeds of as much as 540 kilometres per hour alongside its periphery.
“The intense vorticity of the (Great Red Spot), along with its bigger measurement and depth in comparison with the interacting vortices, ensures its lengthy lifetime,” mentioned research lead creator Agustin Sanchez-Lavega, Professor on the Basque Country University in Bilbao, Spain.
As the bigger storm absorbs these smaller storms, it “positive factors vitality on the expense of their rotation vitality.”
However, the Red Spot has been shrinking for at the least the previous 150 years, dropping from a size of about 40,000 kilometres in 1879 to about 15,000 kilometres at this time, and researchers nonetheless aren’t positive in regards to the causes of the lower, or certainly how the spot was fashioned within the first place.
The analysis, printed within the Journal of Geophysical Research: Planets, discovered the smaller anticyclones move by way of the high-speed peripheral ring of the Great Red Spot earlier than circling across the crimson oval.
The smaller storms create some chaos in an already dynamic scenario, quickly altering the Red Spot’s 90-day oscillation in longitude, and “tearing the crimson clouds from the primary oval and forming streamers,” Sanchez-Lavega mentioned.
The researchers nonetheless have no idea what has brought on the Red Spot to shrink over the many years. But these anticyclones could also be sustaining the enormous storm for now.
“The ingestion of (anticyclones) will not be essentially harmful; it will possibly improve the GRS (Great Red Spot of Jupiter) rotation pace, and maybe over an extended interval, preserve it in a gradual state,” Sanchez-Lavega mentioned.
Sanchez-Lavega and his colleagues checked out satellite tv for pc photographs of the Great Red Spot for the previous three years taken from the Hubble Space Telescope, the Juno spacecraft in orbit round Jupiter and different photographs taken by a community of beginner astronomers with telescopes.
Cyclones like hurricanes or typhoons normally spin round a centre with low atmospheric strain, rotating counter-clockwise within the northern hemisphere and clockwise within the southern, whether or not on Jupiter or Earth.
Anticyclones spin the other manner as cyclones, round a centre with excessive atmospheric strain.
The Great Red Spot is itself an anticyclone, although it’s six to seven instances as large because the smaller anticyclones which were colliding with it.
But even these smaller storms on Jupiter are about half the dimensions of the Earth, and about 10 instances the dimensions of the most important terrestrial hurricanes.
Before 2019, the bigger storm was solely hit by a few anticyclones a 12 months whereas extra not too long ago it was hit by as many as two dozen a 12 months.
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