Jupiter is the largest planet in the solar system. It is so huge that its mass is greater than that of all planets put together. Jupiter's diameter is 11 times that of the earth and its bulk is 318 times heavier. Despite its great distance (370 million miles) from the sun, it is still the second most brilliant planet in our sky, after Venus. This great planet is aptly named after Jupiter, the king of the god's in the Greek pantheon. To hindus, it is guru, associated with benevolence, riches and plenty.
There is one aspect in which the gigantic Jupiter dwarfs itself when compared with the other planets; it has the shortest days, lasting only nine hours and 51 minutes. Buth this also makes it the fastest planet to rotate on its own axis! Jupiter's surface is by and large gaseous and as a result of its tremendous speed of rotation, its surface features appear to be changing continuously.
Jupiter has an atmosphere made up mainly of hydrogen and helium. Oxygen has not yet been detected. There are some scientists whom think that life may exist in the upper atmosphereic layers of this planet of violent storms and changing features.