Currents between Jupiters poles and three of its moons mark its auroras.
Cassinis image of the looping magnetic fields that surround Jupiter.
Two space probes lift the lid on Jupiter’s magnetosphere.
Even Stanley Kubrick couldn’t have directed it better. In the first days of 2001, two spacecraft, Cassini and Galileo, met at Jupiter 400 million kilometres from Earth, to study the mysterious forces emanating from the giant planet.
The first analysis of the data they sent back has now been unveiled1-7. It paints a dramatic picture of the planet’s invisible magnetosphere - looping magnetic fields, crackling radio emissions and intense belts of radiation surround Jupiter and interact with the solar wind and the planet itself.
The cosmic conjunction wasn’t planned. Cassini was waltzing past Jupiter, using the giant’s gravitational energy to send it on to its final destination, Saturn. Galileo, an ageing probe that had been closely orbiting Jupiter and was thought to have stopped working, was found to be still going strong.
Planetary scientists "seized the opportunity offered by this first-ever conjunction of two spacecraft at an outer planet", says Thomas Hill, of Rice University in Houston, Texas.
"There will be people looking at the data for many years," says Spilker. Which is just as well. Another such rendezvous "would not be repeated for the foreseeable future", says Cassini project scientist Dennis Matson.
The chance meeting was short-lived. Cassini has since flown on towards Saturn, due to arrive there in 2004. Galileo will make the ultimate sacrifice and descend into Jupiter’s atmosphere late next year.
TOM CLARKE | © Nature News Service
Meteoritic stardust unlocks timing of supernova dust formation
19.01.2018 | Carnegie Institution for Science
Artificial agent designs quantum experiments
19.01.2018 | Universität Innsbruck
On the way to an intelligent laboratory, physicists from Innsbruck and Vienna present an artificial agent that autonomously designs quantum experiments. In initial experiments, the system has independently (re)discovered experimental techniques that are nowadays standard in modern quantum optical laboratories. This shows how machines could play a more creative role in research in the future.
We carry smartphones in our pockets, the streets are dotted with semi-autonomous cars, but in the research laboratory experiments are still being designed by...
What enables electrons to be transferred swiftly, for example during photosynthesis? An interdisciplinary team of researchers has worked out the details of how...
For the first time, scientists have precisely measured the effective electrical charge of a single molecule in solution. This fundamental insight of an SNSF Professor could also pave the way for future medical diagnostics.
Electrical charge is one of the key properties that allows molecules to interact. Life itself depends on this phenomenon: many biological processes involve...
At the JEC World Composite Show in Paris in March 2018, the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT will be focusing on the latest trends and innovations in laser machining of composites. Among other things, researchers at the booth shared with the Aachen Center for Integrative Lightweight Production (AZL) will demonstrate how lasers can be used for joining, structuring, cutting and drilling composite materials.
No other industry has attracted as much public attention to composite materials as the automotive industry, which along with the aerospace industry is a driver...
Scientists at Tokyo Institute of Technology (Tokyo Tech) and Tohoku University have developed high-quality GFO epitaxial films and systematically investigated their ferroelectric and ferromagnetic properties. They also demonstrated the room-temperature magnetocapacitance effects of these GFO thin films.
Multiferroic materials show magnetically driven ferroelectricity. They are attracting increasing attention because of their fascinating properties such as...
08.01.2018 | Event News
11.12.2017 | Event News
08.12.2017 | Event News
19.01.2018 | Materials Sciences
19.01.2018 | Health and Medicine
19.01.2018 | Physics and Astronomy