Jupiter is truly massive! More than a tenth the diameter of the Sun, and more than 11 times the diameter of Earth. Despite being the largest of the “gas giant” planets, it is 320 times heavier than Earth. The Earth’s orbit in the Solar System is influenced by the gravitational pull of both Jupiter and Saturn.
Jupiter is the fastest planet! A Jovian day lasts only 10 hours. This rapid spinning of its atmosphere creates huge magnetic and radiation fields. As well as the famous Red Spot – a persistent anticyclonic storm, 15,000 miles across.
Jupiter has 67 named moons. The largest four were identified by the famous astrologer and astronomer Galileo Galilei in 1610. They are sometimes visible even with binoculars, and are called Io, Europa, Callisto, and Ganymede.
Ganymede is the largest satellite in our solar system. It is larger than Mercury and Pluto, and three-quarters the size of Mars.
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