October 23, 2000


Jupiter's famous Great Red Spot, a storm as wide as two Earths and more than 300 years old, interrupts the pattern of horizontal stripes on Jupiter in a new color image of the planet from NASA's Cassini spacecraft. The image was taken from a distance of about 78 million kilometers (48 million miles) on Oct. 8. A related panel of three images displays the same side of Jupiter in three different wavelengths, including ultraviolet and infrared views that show features not seen in visible light.

The images are available from NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif., at


and from the web site of the Cassini Imaging Science team at the University of Arizona, Tucson, at


Cassini will pass most closely to Jupiter, at about 10 million kilometers (6 million miles) away, on Dec. 30. Images taken as it approaches and flies past will be used for studies of atmospheric dynamics, dark rings and other features of Jupiter. Cassini is passing Jupiter on its way to its ultimate destination, Saturn.

Additional information about the flyby is available at


Cassini is a cooperative project of NASA, the European Space Agency and the Italian Space Agency. JPL manages the Cassini and Galileo missions for NASA's Office of Space Science, Washington, D.C. JPL is a division of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena.