Ganymede's shadow cast on Jupiter's Great Red Spot. Image Credit: NASA / ESA / A. Simon (Goddard Space Flight Center)

Jupiter Looks Back At Us With Spooky Cyclops Eye

As if the sun’s spooky jack-o’-lantern face wasn’t scary enough, NASA has captured an image of Jupiter sporting a cyclops eye using the Hubble Space Telescope.

In a cosmic coincidence, the largest moon in the solar system aligned with the sun to cast a shadow on the largest storm in the solar system, creating a spooky eye on Jupiter that appears to be looking back at us. The image was captured on April 21 as Jupiter’s moon, Ganymede, occulted the Great Red Spot creating a what looks like a pupil in the eye of the storm. “For a moment, Jupiter ‘stared’ back at Hubble like a one-eyed giant Cyclops,” NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center said in a statement.

Jupiter’s hallmark Great Red Spot is an anticyclonic storm which has persisted for hundreds of years. According to historical observations, the storm is shrinking in size. Observations dating back to the late 1800s estimated the Great Red Spot to be 25,500 miles across. Today it is less than half that size, measuring approximately 10,250 miles across, according to NASA. While the most powerful storm in the solar system may be getting smaller, it is still large enough to swallow Earth whole.