March 3, 2006: Backyard astronomers, grab your telescopes. Jupiter is growing a new red spot.
The official name of this storm is "Oval BA," but "Red Jr." might be better. It's about half the size of the famous Great Red Spot and almost exactly the same color.
Oval BA first appeared in the year 2000 when three smaller spots collided and merged. Using Hubble and other telescopes, astronomers watched with great interest. A similar merger centuries ago may have created the original Great Red Spot, a storm twice as wide as our planet and at least 300 years old.