A 40-year-old Mystery of Jupiter May be Solved

James Maynard
Jul 15 · 3 min read

A great mystery of Jupiter — the cause of regular flashes near the poles of the mighty planet — may be solved.

The magnetic field of Jupiter interacts with charged particles from Io, producing polar lights around Jupiter, a new study explains. Image credit: Screenshot from video by University College London.

Just like Earth, Jupiter is home to polar lights, driven by charged particles racing through the planet’s magnetic field. When these charged particles hit the atmosphere, they release electromagnetic radiation.