Jupiter’s Great Red Spot

After a series of clouded nights, friday I finally had a relatively clear night sky. On Jupiter, there is this big storm that is big enough for the earth to fit in 2 times. This great storm is red-ish and is conveniently called Jupiter’s Great Red Spot, or GRS for short. (Astro)Physicists tend to use quite normal names instead of latin monstrosesquipedalian words (see what I did there?).

Anyhow, as Jupiter – just like earth – rotates around its axis, this GRS is not always visible from earth. A day on Jupiter is about 10 hours long so the GRS is visible 2.5 times per day. Taking into account that the sky is not dark enough for imaging untill 22.00 and that Jupiter is out of sight by 01.00, chances of imaging the GRS are significantly reduced. And then there’s the weather…

But I was lucky friday night and able to aim my telescope at Jupiter’s bright light. Since last time I managed to get more detail out of an iPhone photo than I thought would be possible, I decided to give the iPhone a go again. Bad choice. Should have gone for the xbox camera. Focussing and trying to set ISO went terrible. Below was the best I could get out of the image after processing. At least I captured a dot at the place where the GRS should be, so I did capture the Great Red Spot. It just isn’t very recognizable because it isn’t any more red than its surroundings.

My very louzy, but first image of Jupiter's Great Red Spot

My very louzy, but first image of Jupiter’s Great Red Spot

Then last night. The moon was quite pretty but it was way to hazy outside to even think about using the telescope. So I just grabbed my iPhone, took a couple of photos at different ISO values and tried to combine the better features of the different photos in photoshop to get a nice image. Despite the noise the iPhone produces in low light images, I like the result.

The Moon, Jupiter and if you look carefully, Pollux and a double star next to it

The Moon, Jupiter, on the right Capella and if you look carefully above Jupiter, Pollux and a double star next to it

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s