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Jupiter (Brihaspati) is the fifth planet in the solar system and the first gaseous giant after the asteroid belt.
Discovery of Jupiter:
This Jovian planet was discovered by Galileo Galilei in \(1610\) using his small telescope. 'Jovian' is a word derived from 'Jove', a name for the Roman god 'Jupiter', meaning 'Jupiter-like'.
Galileo Galilei
Even Jupiter has faint rings around it, which is hardly visible from Earth. This planet can be easily recognised since it appears bright in the sky. Jupiter appears brownish-yellow. The period of rotation is \(9\ hours\ 55\ minutes\), and the period of revolution is \(12\ years\).
Great Red Spot:
The Great Red Spot is a huge massive storm that swirls around in the anticlockwise direction at a wind speed of more than \(400\ km/h\). This gigantic storm is about twice the size of Earth.
red spot.png
Jupiter's great red spot
Satellites of Jupiter:
Jupiter has a large number of moons or satellites around it. It has more than \(600\) celestial objects rotating around it, but those were not considered satellites. To date, it has \(79\) moons with a stable orbit, out of which four of its large moons can be seen using a telescope.
Moons of Jupiter
Those four moons, Io, Ganymede, Callisto, and Europa, were also found by Galileo Galilei. Ganymede is the largest moon or natural satellite in the solar system.
Comparison with Earth:
Jupiter is the largest planet, which rotates rapidly on its axis. Even though it is a giant, the mass of Jupiter is about \(318\) times that of the Earth. It is a giant planet which can occupy around \(1331\) times the earth inside. On comparing the radius, Jupiter is \(11\) times that of the Earth.
Size comparison of Earth and Jupiter
This comparison can be calculated using the formula of the volume of the sphere since Jupiter and Earth are spherical in shape.
where \(R\) is the radius of a sphere.