Jupiter Loses A Stripe

David Shiga writes on New Scientist:
Jupiter Loses A Stripe

Jupiter has lost one of its prominent stripes, leaving its southern half looking unusually blank. Scientists are not sure what triggered the disappearance of the band.

Jupiter’s appearance is usually dominated by two dark bands in its atmosphere — one in the northern hemisphere and one in the southern hemisphere.

But recent images taken by amateur astronomers show that the southern band — called the south equatorial belt — has disappeared.

The band was present at the end of 2009, right before Jupiter moved too close to the sun in the sky to be observed from Earth. When the planet emerged from the sun’s glare again in early April, its south equatorial belt was nowhere to be seen.

Read More: New Scientist

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  • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/6P5PBLZIDF2UZGPWPIC7RX4REI Chasing

    This is pretty odd no? Sounds epic to me, having grown up making collages with the upper and lower belts on Jupiter. Does it’s surface change this dramatically often?

  • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/6P5PBLZIDF2UZGPWPIC7RX4REI Chasing

    This is pretty odd no? Sounds epic to me, having grown up making collages with the upper and lower belts on Jupiter. Does it's surface change this dramatically often?

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