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Jupiter is nothing like scientists expected

Heat radiating from cyclones on Jupiter's South Pole.
Heat radiating from cyclones on Jupiter's South Pole. Credit: NASA / SWRI / JPL / ASI / INAF / IAPS

New data from NASA's Juno spacecraft show patterns of cyclones, a core that behaves like a solid, and a jet stream that, unlike on Earth, extends deep into the planet.

Why it matters: Despite all of the beautiful images of Jupiter's Great Red Spot nestled among its iconic bands, little is known about what is happening in the planet's interior. The structure could hint at the formation of the solar system's largest and first planet — and of Earth's later origins.