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About radioactive emission by Jupiter

  1. Mar 2, 2014 #1
    Sorry about my poor English.

    I heard Jupiter emits lethal amounts of radioactivity (I don't know what kind). I also read things that suggested that there are areas where this radioactivity is more intense than on other areas.

    I wanted to know a few things:
    a) why does Jupiter emits so much radiation?
    b) what is the nature of that radiation?
    c) where are the areas where the radiation level is stronger?
    d) as Jupiter rotates, does the radioactively intense areas rotate with it? Or are they stationary in relation to Jupiter's center?
    e) If you are close to Jupiter itself, let's say, just a few kilometers above it's atmosphere, the amount of radiation that will hit you will be greater than the amount that would hit you if you were sitting at one of the many Jupiter's moons? Or would it be less? Or the same?
    f) Is there any place near Jupiter where the crew of manned ship would be safe from the planet's radiatioactive emission?

    A few other questions may arise once those are answered. Thanks a lot to anyone who is patient enough to read and answer this question.
    Last edited: Mar 2, 2014
  2. jcsd
  3. Mar 2, 2014 #2
  4. Mar 2, 2014 #3


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    Jupiter reflects light and has strong radio emissions. The radiation to which one refers seems to be a reference to the magnetosphere and radiation belts surrounding Jupiter.



  5. Mar 2, 2014 #4
    From what I could understand, Jupiter has 2 three-dimensional shapes enveloping it called the radiation belts. They rotate along with the planet. They are formed by high energy particles collected from a constant flow of gases from Io and from the solar winds, and they are collected and highly energized by Jupiter's magetosphere.

    It is also said that Jupiter emits radiation in the form of radio waves, but those are safe to humans, right? Although I think they could cause problems to eletronics.

    So that huge magnetosphere is harmless, except for the radiation belts? Meaning, as long as you are not inside those regions, you are safe from radiation.

    A few moons are constantly inside the radiation belts, including Europa, which the cientists believe may have alien life in it's underground ocean.

    Please, did I understand everything correctly?
    Last edited: Mar 2, 2014
  6. Mar 2, 2014 #5


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    These are similar to the Earth's Van Allen radiation belts

    Jupiter has significant bursts of radio noise centred ~ the 20 to 23 MHz area detecting it is a good amateur radio astronomy project ... I did that many years ago
    no problems to electronics

    The radiation belts may be harmful to humans or equip in close range of the belts ...
    in a brief www search, I didn't see anything specific. Didn't have time to search too deep.
    You can do that :)

  7. Mar 3, 2014 #6
    Thank you Dave.

    I didn't have the need to google that info because the articles people linked were pretty informative and interesting. I just wanted to confirm if I did understand everything from the articles right. Also, there's nothing on the articles about any hazards inside the magnetosphere, except for two areas known as the radiation belts. I was just verifying if I could assume the magnetosphere presented no hazards outside the radiation belts, because the magnetosphere is a lot bigger than just the radiation belts, it's tail extends all the way to the orbit of saturn! And the Sun along with it's visible corona could fit inside it with room to spare! I'm really amazed but this thing :)
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