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The fifth planet from the Sun and the largest planet in our solar system. Jupiter orbits the Sun at an average distance of 5.2 time Earth’s distance (about 465 million miles/745 million km). The planet has a mass 318 times the mass of Earth and a radius 11.2 times the radius of Earth. Jupiter is a gas planet and has no solid surface. It is made of hydrogen and helium, with trace amounts of ammonia, water vapor, and methane. The most recognizable features of the planet are its bands of clouds and a giant storm visible from Earth called the Great Red Spot. Jupiter has more than 60 known moons, the largest of which are Io, Europa, Ganymede, and Callisto.


Jupiter's Moons February 19, 2016


Jupiter February 10, 2016

Realm of the Giants June 10, 2010

Radio Programs

Moon and Jupiter A “jovial” encounter in the night sky September 3, 2023

Moon and Jupiter The “melty” center of giant Jupiter August 7, 2023

Moon and Jupiter One-size-fits-all planets and stars July 10, 2023

Morning Jupiter A giant planet protects our own June 23, 2023

Moon and Jupiter Gaining weight on a giant planet May 16, 2023

New Moons Adding to the clutter around Jupiter April 13, 2023

‘Juicy’ Mission Getting “juiced” for a trip to Jupiter April 10, 2023

Moon and Jupiter A double disappearing act for Jupiter March 21, 2023

Moon and Jupiter A giant, colorful beachball December 28, 2022

Moon and Jupiter Grand names for a grand planet October 7, 2022

Jupiter at Opposition III Big thunderstorms for a big planet September 26, 2022

Jupiter at Opposition II Listening in on a giant planet September 25, 2022

Jupiter at Opposition The “king” puts in a regal appearance September 24, 2022

Moon and Jupiter The Moon and a mini solar system August 14, 2022

Moon and Jupiter Changing the birthplace of a giant July 17, 2022

Mars and Jupiter Planets with a shared history May 27, 2022

Moon and Companions II The Moon runs the gauntlet April 25, 2022

Jupiter at Conjunction A giant planet goes into hiding March 5, 2022

Moon and Jupiter A journey across the sky comes to an end February 2, 2022

Moon and Jupiter A giant storm speeds up December 8, 2021

Moon and Jupiter Taking a look at a dangerous planet November 11, 2021

Moon and Jupiter Floating through the clouds of Jupiter August 21, 2021

Bookends Bright bookends in the early evening August 15, 2021

Moon and Planets Slowing down some spinning giants July 24, 2021

Juno Arrives Celebrating five years at Jupiter July 4, 2021

Moon and Planets Rounding off Jupiter’s orbit May 30, 2021

Second Storm A storm with an amazing history April 25, 2021

Changing Spot A changing “spot” on a giant planet April 24, 2021

Moon and Jupiter Snowballs that pack a wallop April 6, 2021

Mercury and Jupiter Crossing paths in the dawn sky March 2, 2021

Jupiter and Saturn Giant planets snuggle up December 1, 2020

Saturn at Opposition II Planets head into reverse July 20, 2020

Saturn at Opposition The solar system’s runner-up July 19, 2020

Jupiter at Opposition II A big new storm joins the club July 13, 2020

Jupiter at Opposition The giant influence of a giant planet July 12, 2020

Moon and Jupiter A system of watery worlds June 7, 2020

Moon and Jupiter The king of the Olympics May 11, 2020

Moon and Planets A bright lineup in the dawn sky March 16, 2020

More Venus and Jupiter Powerful lights on a giant planet November 24, 2019

Moon and Jupiter Smacking into a giant planet October 30, 2019

Moon and Jupiter Rings around a giant planet September 5, 2019

Moon and Jupiter Blasting a giant planet July 13, 2019

Jupiter at Opposition III A big move for a giant planet June 11, 2019

Jupiter at Opposition II Dissolving the heart of the giant June 10, 2019

Jupiter at Opposition Lining up a brilliant planet June 9, 2019

Moon and Planets Growing giants beyond the snow line April 23, 2019

Morning Lights Lighting up the dawn of the new year December 31, 2018

Moon and Jupiter Spinning up a giant planet September 13, 2018

Moon and Jupiter Giant Jupiter fades a bit June 23, 2018

Moon and Jupiter Hefty storms for a hefty planet May 27, 2018

Moon, Jupiter, Spica Restructuring planetary systems May 26, 2018

More Jupiter Getting rid of Jupiter’s red “eye” May 8, 2018

Jupiter at Opposition A planet with a giant personality May 7, 2018

Moon and Jupiter A shoving match in the early solar system April 29, 2018

Moon and Jupiter Peering into the heart of a giant April 2, 2018

Moon and Planets Hazards to planetary navigation January 10, 2018

Moon and Jupiter Adding to a big family of moons August 25, 2017

Moon and Jupiter A study in contrasts in the evening sky July 28, 2017

Moon and Jupiter Primetime on the really big screen June 30, 2017

Moon and Jupiter White ovals and red spots June 3, 2017

Moon and Jupiter Protection against a “dead zone” May 7, 2017

Moon and Companions Plotting the motions of a giant May 6, 2017

Moon and Jupiter Giving birth to giant worlds April 10, 2017

Jupiter at Opposition A giant showing for a giant planet April 7, 2017

Featured Images

One-Size-Fits-Many July 10, 2023

hubble space telescope view of jupiter and europa

Busy Giant July 17, 2022

Juno spacecraft orbits Jupiter

Deep View March 5, 2022

hubble space telescope portraits of jupiter, saturn, uranus, neptune

The Neighbors November 20, 2021

Cassini view of crescent Jupiter and Io

Deadly Duo November 11, 2021

the clouds of jupiter

Inhospitable Clouds August 21, 2021

Juno spacecraft view of Ganymede

Close Visit June 11, 2021

Juno at Jupiter

Keeping Track May 30, 2021

Juno view of Jupiter's Great Red Spot, Oval BA

Double Storms April 25, 2021

artist's concept of high-altitude lightning on jupiter

Stormy Giant April 6, 2021

Infrared view of Jupiter

Blazing Giant May 9, 2020

Ganymede and Jupiter

Complicated Moon January 21, 2020

Artist's concept of a small planet smacking into the young Jupiter

All Mixed Up October 30, 2019

Jupiter's Great Red Spot

Shrinking Spot August 9, 2019

Shoemaker-Levy 9 takes aim at Jupiter

Taking Aim July 13, 2019

View of Jupiter's southern hemisphere from June, February 2019

Artistic Giant June 9, 2019

Cyclones at the north pole of Jupite

Cyclone Haven May 27, 2018

Hubble view of Jupiter, 2014

Beautiful Giant May 7, 2018

Juno view of the Great Red Spot; July 10, 2017

Red Eye July 16, 2017

Voyager 1 view of white oval storms on Jupiter

Jovian Pearls June 3, 2017

Io and Jupiter

Volcanic Connection May 7, 2017

Juno view of Jupiter's clouds

Jovian Swirls March 27, 2017

Jupiter above Europa

Water World July 8, 2016

Cloud Stripes June 26, 2016

Radio image of Jupiter

Jovian Radio June 7, 2016

Jupiter's Great Red Spot and surrounding cloud bands

Deep Surface May 15, 2016

Jovian Rings March 9, 2016

Auroras on Jupiterk

Polar Rings February 22, 2016

Artist's concept of Galileo Jupiter probe

Dropping In December 30, 2015

Cassini view of Jupiter from 6 million miles

Turbulent Giant February 6, 2015