Jupiter: A gas giant

Jupiter is the fifth planet of our solar system but the largest of all. It is the focus of attention of the world’s renowned space agency, NASA. The planet is composed of swirls and stripes which are actually the gigantic clouds of Ammonia and water. The big Eye of the planet which is the giant red spot is comprised of an ever raging storm which is bigger than the size of the entire Earth. Jupiter gets its name after the king of the ancient Gods for it’s the largest in the solar system. It has like 50 moons which have been confirmed while there could be more which are awaiting authentication.

Size of Jupiter

Jupiter is 11 times wide as compared to the Earth and is at a distance of 778 million kilometers from the sun, therefore, it takes 43 minutes for light from the sun to reach Jupiter. It takes only 10 hours for Jupiter to rotate around once making its days the shortest. But it takes 12 Earth years for Jupiter to revolve around the sun once. Jupiter’s orbital axis is rotated by 3 degrees and it seems that it rotates almost in an upright position and has no seasonal changes like the Earth.

Planet’s Composition

Jupiter is mostly composed of Hydrogen and helium which is the composition of the sun. This planet is believed to have formed much later than the rest of the solar system and its gravitational pull attracted most of the left over matter from the sun. Due to extreme pressure the gas is compressed into its liquid state and forms the gigantic ocean of hydrogen. The hydrogen ocean is believed to be electrocuted and is one of the answers to the fast rotation of Jupiter which also results in the planet’s strong magnetic field. Jupiter might not even have a solid surface and might only be a giant gaseous ball which if in case had any solid surface would be made up of silicate and iron under approximately 50,000 Celsius temperature.

Jupiter’s cloudsJupiter's clouds

The beautiful colors of clouds and the patterns that are made by them are magnificent to the eye, are mostly comprised of Sulfur and Phosphorus. The winds in Jupiter can rise up to 335 miles per hour.

Jupiter’s surface

The surface of Jupiter is not habitable for life. The extreme winds, pressures, atmosphere and temperature makes it almost impossible for any kind of life to exist on this planet. Although the moons of this planet like Europa may have favorable conditions to support life.


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