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2011: Infrared image of Jupiter from SOFIA's First Light flight composed of individual images at wavelengths of 5.4 (blue), 24 (green) and 37 microns (red) made by Cornell University's FORCAST camera. Ground-based infrared observations are impossible at 5.4 and 37 microns and normally very difficult at 24 microns even from high mountaintop observatories such as Mauna Kea (Hawaii) due to absorption by water and other molecules in Earth's atmosphere. The white stripe in the infrared image is a region of relatively transparent clouds through which the warm interior of Jupiter can be seen. A recent visual-wavelength picture of approximately the same side of Jupiter is shown for comparison. (Images are oriented with Jupiter's south pole at the top.) Infrared image: NASA/SOFIA/USRA/FORCAST Team/James De Buizer Visible light image: Anthony Wesley

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