Thursday, 23 July 2009

Impact on Jupiter

Breaking Astronomical news, the above picture is the latest image of an impact on Jupiter. As yet it is I think unclear whether it was a comet or asteroid that caused the impact. Although comets striking Jupiter have occurred before, just over fifteen years ago a comet named shoe-maker Levi 9 came too close Jupiter. Jupiter’s colossal gravitational pull tore the comet into several small chunks. Each one then over the course of 24 hours plummeted into the Jovian clouds. Although the Comet fragments were completely obliterated in the atmosphere, they did leave dark markings (Scars of the impact). Similar to the dark mark you can see above. Incidentally each of these dark markings caused by the shoemaker impact was the size of the Earth. Which is another reason why we should all be thankful of Jupiter’s presence, because if it wasn’t there that comet could quite possible have hit the Earth! Causing Apocalyptic damage.
15 years later it seems another piece of space debris as hit the king of the planets. This impact occurred in Jupiter’s South Polar Region, which rather confusingly in this image taken by an Amateur in Australia, appears to be where the North Pole would be. I’m not an expert on optics but this is I am told is due to the mirror in the telescope which flips the image so it appears upside down. Or the correct way if you are a sleeping bat.
Anyway as more information on this impact unfolds it tells us one thing, the solar system is constantly evolving and constantly active!

No comments:

Post a Comment