Asked by Lizzie Wilson
New Horizons, which is currently making its way to Pluto, took its very first photographs of Jupiter in 2006. At the time, the spacecraft was around 291 million kilometres (181 million miles) away.
It wasn’t until January 2007 that New Horizons began to explore Jupiter and its moons. Since the gas giant is an ever-changing scientific target, the spacecraft observed the planet’s atmospheric conditions and analysed the structure and composition of its clouds.
Lightening strikes raging in the polar regions, as well as other violent storm activity, were observed and measured. In particular, New Horizons got up close to and imaged Jupiter’s Little Red Spot, which spans up to 70 per cent of Earth’s diameter, for the very first time.
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