Showing posts from March, 2016

Jupiter Got Whacked by Yet Another Asteroid/Comet!

Source:  By Phil Plait, Bad Astronomy 2016-03-29. Jupiter Got Whacked by Yet Another Asteroid/Comet! By Phil Plait, Bad Astronomy. For GSS A Changing Cosmos chapter 1. Excerpt: On March 17, Gerrit Kernbauer, an amateur astronomer in Mödling, Austria, was taking video of Jupiter using a 20 cm telescope. ...he got more than he expected. At 00:18:33 UTC he captured what looks very much like the impact of a small comet or asteroid into Jupiter! [see video] ...On average object will hit Jupiter with roughly five times the velocity it hits Earth, so the impact energy is 25 times as high. The asteroid that burned up over Chelyabinsk, Russia, in 2013 was 19 meters across, and it exploded with the energy of 500,000 tons of TNT. Now multiply that by 25, and you can see how it doesn’t take all that big a rock to hit Jupiter for us to be able to see it from Earth. Incidentally, at these huge speeds, hitting the atmosphere is like slamming into a wall. A lot of people get understandably