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Something big Just hit Jupiter!

17 Sep 2021, 22:19 UTC
Something big Just hit Jupiter!
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In 1994, the Comet Shoemaker-Levy 9 (SL9) impacted Jupiter, which had captured the comet shortly before (and broken apart by its gravity). The event became a media circus as it was the first direct observation of an extraterrestrial collision of Solar System objects. The impact was so powerful that it left scars that endured for months and were more discernible than Jupiter’s Great Red Spot.

Since then, astronomers have observed multiple objects impacting Jupiter, and it is expected that such impacts happen all the time (though unobserved). On September 13th, 2021, at 22:39:30 UTC (06:39:30 PM EDT; 03:39 PM:30 PDT), another impact was observed by multiple astronomers across the world. Images and a video of the impact (shown below) were captured by members of Société Lorraine d’Astronomie (SLA) in France.

The impact was reported by Brazilian amateur astronomer Jose Luis Pereira and confirmed a day later by Harald Paleske from Langendorf, Germany. At the time, Paleske had been taking a video of the transit of Io’s shadow when the event occurred, which appeared as a two-second flash. Upon reviewing the footage, he ruled out the possibility that the event happened closer to Earth (with Jupiter merely being the backdrop).

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