Jupiter Impact

Jupiter Impact

Jupiter is sometimes referred to as the Solar System's "vacuum cleaner". It is the most massive planet in the system and its gravity has "attracted" a lot of smaller bodied objects - comets/asteroids - that otherwise may have gone in closer to the Sun and potentially struck Earth.

In July 1993 Comet Shoemaker–Levy 9 (SL-9) collided with Jupiter, an event that was observed and imaged by amateurs and professionals all over the world. A few nights ago, an amateur astronomer called Ethan Chappel, whilst observing the Perseid meteors, had his Celestron 8" EdgeHD telescope pointed at Jupiter with his imaging camera recording the view.

8" EdgeHD

At 04:07UTC his equipment recorded a flash near the limb of Jupiter's South Equatorial Belt (SEB) and not far from the Great Red Spot - the signs of a possible impact - that lasted 0.9 and 1.6 seconds!

If this impact is confirmed it would be the 7th that has been recorded since the SL-9 event in 1993.

What this shows is that amateurs with small telescopes and popular imaging equipment can record such rare and amazing events, and also contribute towards science and our understanding of what is going on in our Solar System today.

You can read more about this below:



More information on the Edge HD 8" Telescope can be found here.

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