One of Jupiter’s most distinctive features – the Great Red Spot – is shrinking, according to new images from the Hubble Space Telescope.
The spot, which is a violent storm, is considered to be the biggest in the Solar System. In images taken by space telescopes and probes, the storm appears as a deep red orb surrounded by layers of pale yellow, orange and white. Winds inside the storm have been measured at several hundreds of miles per hour.
The spot was first conclusively spotted by Italian astronomer Giovanni Cassini – who, incidentally, had a NASA probe sent to Jupiter named after him – in 1665, and subsequently first represented by artist Donato Creti in a series of paintings of the heavenly bodies around 1700.