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Jupiter Impact Confirmed
Universe Today ^ | 7/20/09 | Nancy Atkinson

Posted on 07/20/2009 7:40:32 PM PDT by LibWhacker


This image shows a large impact shown on the bottom left on Jupiter's south polar region captured on July 20, 2009, by NASA's Infrared Telescope Facility in Mauna Kea, Hawaii. Credit: NASA/JPL/Infrared Telescope Facility

As we reported yesterday, an amateur astronomer snapped evidence of an impact on Jupiter. Now, NASA has confirmed the black spot on the giant gas planet is in fact an impact and not just a weather-related disturbance. And Anthony Wesley has now made the biggest observation of his life.

"It still feels very surreal right now," he told Universe Today. "I guess it will take some time to really sink in (pun intended). I guess it shows that persistence and many hours at the scope eventually pays off."

The Infrared Telescope Facility at the summit of Mauna Kea, Hawaii, has imaged the south polar region Jupiter, confirming the impact, which occurred on July 19. New infrared images show the likely impact point, with a visibly dark "scar" and bright upwelling particles in the upper atmosphere detected in near-infrared wavelengths, and a warming of the upper troposphere with possible extra emission from ammonia gas detected at mid-infrared wavelengths.

Anthony said imaging Jupiter has been his main passion since 2004. "It's such a dynamic system that every image I take shows something new and different," he said, "It keeps me coming back year after year, with bigger and better equipment each time. I never expected to see anything like this of course, but even the routine imaging of Jupiter's storm systems can reveal a tremendous wealth of detail."

Anthony said this is one of the areas where amateurs can make a significant contribution to science. "The the study of planetary atmospherics is a very hot topic at the moment and nowhere are the dynamics more evident than on Jupiter," he said. "Researchers are coming to rely on amateur images of Jupiter for much of their data, augmented by professional images whenever something truly significant occurs that justifies the cost of using the larger instruments."

"It's significant that in each of the last 3 years amateurs have made the initial discoveries of new features in the Jovian atmosphere, the colour change of the previously white Oval BA to red in 2007 by Chris Go of the Philippines, the formation of another (smaller) red spot last year by myself, and then this event in 2009. In all cases the amateur work was followed up with imagery from Hubble and other major telescopes."

This new impact occurred exactly 15 years after the first impacts by the comet Shoemaker-Levy 9, and as the celebrations of the Apollo 11 moon landings are taking place.

Glenn Orton, a scientist at JPL and his team of astronomers kicked into gear early in Monday morning and haven't stopped tracking the planet. They are downloading data now and are working to get additional observing time on this and other telescopes.

"We were extremely lucky to be seeing Jupiter at exactly the right time, the right hour, the right side of Jupiter to witness the event. We couldn't have planned it better," he said.

The top image taken by the Infrared Telescope Facility, was taken at 1.65 microns, a wavelength sensitive to sunlight reflected from high in Jupiter's atmosphere, and it shows both the bright center of the scar (bottom left) and the debris to its northwest (upper left).

"It could be the impact of a comet, but we don't know for sure yet," said Orton. "It's been a whirlwind of a day, and this on the anniversary of the Shoemaker-Levy 9 and Apollo anniversaries is amazing."

Shoemaker-Levy 9 was a comet that had been seen to break into many pieces before the pieces hit Jupiter in 1994.

Sources: JPL, email exchange with Anthony Wesley

Filed under: Astrophotos, Jupiter, Observing


TOPICS: News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: catastrophism; confirmed; impact; jupiter

1 posted on 07/20/2009 7:40:32 PM PDT by LibWhacker
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To: LibWhacker

If you zero in on the “impact” site, you’ll see millions of monoliths.


2 posted on 07/20/2009 7:42:09 PM PDT by ak267
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To: SunkenCiv

ping


3 posted on 07/20/2009 7:43:40 PM PDT by BBell
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To: LibWhacker

4 posted on 07/20/2009 7:44:38 PM PDT by NonValueAdded (What if the Sanction of the Victim is withdrawn?)
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To: LibWhacker

5 posted on 07/20/2009 7:45:24 PM PDT by P.O.E. ((optional, printed after your name on post):)
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To: LibWhacker

Thanks again to the Solar System’s vaccuum cleaner!


6 posted on 07/20/2009 7:47:13 PM PDT by America_Right (The best thing about the Obama Presidency: McCain isn't the President!)
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To: LibWhacker

“What are you doing, Dave?”

LOL...


7 posted on 07/20/2009 7:47:24 PM PDT by Star Traveler (The God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob is a Zionist and Jerusalem is the apple of His eye.)
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To: LibWhacker

Somehow Karl Rove is responsible for this.


8 posted on 07/20/2009 7:48:22 PM PDT by machogirl (If Obama's handing out Pie, I like Lemon Meringue.)
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To: LibWhacker

Hal, speak to me. Hal?


9 posted on 07/20/2009 7:50:56 PM PDT by MadMax, the Grinning Reaper
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To: machogirl

Bush’s fault. ;p


10 posted on 07/20/2009 7:51:05 PM PDT by cranked
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To: LibWhacker

So that’s where my Fourth of July rocket went!


11 posted on 07/20/2009 7:52:22 PM PDT by MadMax, the Grinning Reaper
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To: LibWhacker
I've been here the whole time and never felt a thing...


12 posted on 07/20/2009 7:53:08 PM PDT by FlJoePa
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To: LibWhacker

Better Jupiter than us...That could have been a planet killer for earth.


13 posted on 07/20/2009 7:53:50 PM PDT by dragnet2
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To: ak267

At what rate are they increasing?


14 posted on 07/20/2009 8:11:16 PM PDT by Daniel II (I'm Jim Thompson, this is my brother Jimmy, and this is my other brother Jimmy)
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To: dragnet2

I hope there weren’t any others cruising along with it that weren’t sucked into Jupiter... because they’d be inbound right now, headed toward the inner solar system and too dark to see until the last minute. Gulp. Don’t want any mountains crossing earth’s orbit!


15 posted on 07/20/2009 8:15:12 PM PDT by LibWhacker (America awake!)
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To: LibWhacker

Must be December 22, 2012 on Jupiter.

Any Mayans living there?


16 posted on 07/20/2009 8:15:19 PM PDT by Kickass Conservative (If Hitler used a TelePrompter, we would all be speaking German...)
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To: Daniel II

exponential


17 posted on 07/20/2009 8:17:41 PM PDT by ak267
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To: LibWhacker

Oh no! Jovian warming! Run!


18 posted on 07/20/2009 8:19:56 PM PDT by Attention Surplus Disorder (What kind of organization answers the phone if you call a suicide hotline in Gaza City?)
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To: ak267

The large outer planets (Jupiter and Saturn) tend to “shield” the earth from large objects by drawing them into their gravity fields before they can get past and head for earth.

If they weren’t there, whatever it was that has been hitting Jupiter would be headed in our direction...


19 posted on 07/20/2009 8:21:15 PM PDT by CondorFlight (I)
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To: CondorFlight

Looking at the lunar surface, and the size of many of those impacts, I’m not so sure,


20 posted on 07/20/2009 8:31:46 PM PDT by dragnet2
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To: LibWhacker
For more info "from the horse's mouth", see http://jupiter.samba.org/jupiter-impact.html
21 posted on 07/20/2009 8:33:34 PM PDT by The Electrician ("Government is the only enterprise in the world which expands in size when its failures increase.")
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To: machogirl
Somehow Karl Rove is responsible for this.

"Jove, you magnificent bastard!"

Photobucket

22 posted on 07/20/2009 8:38:36 PM PDT by rfp1234
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To: LibWhacker
Confirmed: It was the Thuktun Flishithy

We are saved!

23 posted on 07/21/2009 5:38:54 AM PDT by DCBryan1 ( Arm Pilots&Teachers. Build the Wall. Export Illegals. Profile Muslims. Execute child molesters RFN!)
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To: BBell

Thanks BBell!

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/chat/2296440/posts
http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/news/2297183/posts


24 posted on 07/21/2009 9:24:42 AM PDT by SunkenCiv (https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/__Since Jan 3, 2004__Profile updated Monday, January 12, 2009)
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To: 75thOVI; aimhigh; Alice in Wonderland; AndrewC; aragorn; aristotleman; Avoiding_Sulla; BBell; ...
additional.
 
Catastrophism
 
· join · view topics · view or post blog · bookmark · post new topic ·

25 posted on 07/21/2009 9:25:30 AM PDT by SunkenCiv (https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/__Since Jan 3, 2004__Profile updated Monday, January 12, 2009)
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To: CondorFlight

Almost as if they were placed there on purpose, eh?


26 posted on 07/21/2009 9:25:35 AM PDT by MrB (Go Galt now, save Bowman for later)
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To: MrB

Exactly.............


27 posted on 07/21/2009 9:27:30 AM PDT by ConservativeMan55
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To: America_Right
Thanks again to the Solar System’s vaccuum cleaner!

Ya, it's so darned big it draws all the objects in. A nice guy to have in your neighborhood ...
28 posted on 07/21/2009 9:38:14 AM PDT by Scythian
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To: FlJoePa

Hey, is we eat at the “Crab Pot” every year when we go down to Florida, I love that restuarant, I realize that photo is down a tad bit from there but I recognized the lighthouse right away ...


29 posted on 07/21/2009 9:39:34 AM PDT by Scythian
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related (and timely):

Comet Shoemaker-Levy Collision with Jupiter [July 16 through July 22, 1994]
JPL | Friday, July 10, 2009 | Ron Baalke
Posted on 07/10/2009 12:53:47 PM PDT by SunkenCiv
http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/chat/2289908/posts


30 posted on 07/21/2009 10:22:50 AM PDT by SunkenCiv (https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/__Since Jan 3, 2004__Profile updated Monday, January 12, 2009)
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To: DCBryan1

Well, hopefully they don’t come back with a small moon!


31 posted on 07/21/2009 10:48:53 AM PDT by BrewingFrog (I brew, therefore I am!)
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To: LibWhacker

It’s almost like the universe itself is celebrating the moon landings. First hit 25 years later almost to the day, and now 40 years later to the very day!


32 posted on 07/21/2009 5:17:16 PM PDT by Nateman (If liberals aren't screaming you're doing it wrong.)
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