NASA's Hubble Space Telescope delivers epic new views of gas giant planets Dazzling glamour shots for Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus and Neptune from the workhorse scope.

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Dazzling glamor shots for Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus and Neptune from workhorse scope.

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Hubble’s 2021 images of the outer planets show changes in the atmospheres of Jupiter (left), Saturn (upper right), Uranus (middle) and Neptune (lower right).


There are certainly some beautiful planets in our solar system. On Thursday, NASA and the European Space Agency released new looks at Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus and Neptune as seen by the Hubble Space Telescope.

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All four planets are gas giants, making them, unlike Earth or Mars, which are rocky. As NASA put it poetically in a statement on Hubble images, “Spanning 500 million to 3 billion miles from the Sun, these monsters are as mysterious as they are, living so far away from the Sun that water immediately The solid freezes into ice.”

Hubble, a joint project of NASA and ESA, annually monitors the outer planets so that scientists can track weather and atmospheric changes over time. The images are part of the Outer Planet Atmosphere Heritage Program (OPAL) and were taken in September and October.

On September 4, telescopes on Jupiter saw new storms. “Every time we get new data, the image quality and detail in cloud facilities always blows me away,” said Amy Simon of Goddard Space Flight Center.

7 September view of Saturn revealed color changes associated with seasonal changes. Hubble’s close look allows researchers to pinpoint which bands of the striped planet are changing color.

Uranus is sporting a bright white polar region in Hubble’s October 25 image. “Researchers are studying how the luminous polar hood results in changes in atmospheric methane gas concentration and the characteristics of haze particles, as well as atmospheric flow patterns,” NASA said.

Neptune looks like a blue marble in a telescope’s September 7 view. It’s rocking some tangled dark spots, one of which is moving around. NASA said that the planet looks very similar to that seen by the Voyager 2 mission in 1989.

Hubble has spent more than three decades unraveling the mysteries of space. NS Telescope team is currently working on technical fault, but its one main science tool is up and running during troubleshooting. If all goes well, we can expect Hubble to provide another round of planetary images in 2022.

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