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Jupiter Has Taken a Massive Meteor Hit (So Earth Didnít Have To)
Gizmodo ^ | 9/12/12 | Jamie Condliffe

Posted on 09/12/2012 2:41:21 PM PDT by LibWhacker

On Monday, Jupiter took a massive hit from a meteor, which was spotted by amateur astronomers based in the US—and if previous evidence is anything to go by, it could have saved Earth from a massive collision in the process.

Dan Peterson of Racine, Wisconsin, was gazing at Jupiter on Monday when he saw a bright, white flash on the surface of the planet. When he posted his observation online, another astrophotographer, George Hall, discovered he'd unknowingly captured the massive explosion on video.

Turns out it was probably a meteor striking the surface of the planet—and you can watch the video below. In fact, this is evidence of Jupiter's protective effect as far as Earth is concerned. Because the planet is so massive Jupiter's gravitational field sucks a great many asteroids and comets towards it, which means that there are fewer threats to our humble little planet.

Which is just as well: a similar metoer strike in 2009 caused a bruise on the face of Jupiter the size of the Pacific Ocean. [George 1985 via Space]

Short YouTube video of the impact


TOPICS: Astronomy; Science
KEYWORDS: asteroid; asteroids; bolide; catastrophism; comet; danpeterson; impact; impacts; jupiter; meteor; racine; wisconsin; worldsincollision
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It kind of looks to me like there is also a short arc of smaller impacts above the main one. Another simultaneous shotgun blast of meteors hitting Jupiter or photographic artifact?
1 posted on 09/12/2012 2:41:30 PM PDT by LibWhacker
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To: LibWhacker

Could be the meteor fragmenting as it hit the atmosphere. The smaller chunks would disperse around the large projectile.


2 posted on 09/12/2012 2:45:24 PM PDT by Charles Martel (Endeavor to persevere...)
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To: LibWhacker

Jupiter didn't take that hit by itself it had help!
3 posted on 09/12/2012 2:45:24 PM PDT by Kartographer ("We mutually pledge to each other our lives, our fortunes and our sacred honor.")
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To: LibWhacker

As a gas giant, I’m not sure you can say that it hit the “surface” but it’s an interesting event.


4 posted on 09/12/2012 2:45:54 PM PDT by The Toad
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To: LibWhacker

I think that this was intended for Earth on December 21st. Must be the Mayans didn’t factor Jupiter into their calculations.


5 posted on 09/12/2012 2:46:11 PM PDT by fhayek
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To: LibWhacker

That was a big hit. Given the relative size of Jupiter versus the Earth, it would have been nasty if it had come our way.


6 posted on 09/12/2012 2:47:02 PM PDT by EagleUSA
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To: EagleUSA

One day it WILL come our way.


7 posted on 09/12/2012 2:48:36 PM PDT by Terry Mross
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To: LibWhacker

THANK YOU JUPITER!!!! WE LOVE YOU!!!


8 posted on 09/12/2012 2:51:18 PM PDT by NCDave (AKA, "That idiot over there")
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To: LibWhacker

So! The Shoemaker-Levy event is not as rare as originally thought.


9 posted on 09/12/2012 2:51:47 PM PDT by reg45 (Barack 0bama: Implementing class warfare by having no class!)
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To: fhayek

I realized today that I’m a FReeper of the apocalypse. My sign up anniversary is on the day the world is supposed to live.

FReepers of the apocalypse, lets ride!


10 posted on 09/12/2012 2:53:30 PM PDT by cripplecreek (What does it profit a man if he gains the whole world but loses his soul?)
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To: LibWhacker

Bush’s fault.
.
.
.
.
.
.
Sorry, I couldn’t help myself.


11 posted on 09/12/2012 2:55:51 PM PDT by Rebelbase (The most transparent administration ever is clear as mud.)
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To: Terry Mross

I don’t understand why we assume that it protects us. Seems to me that there is an equal chance that asteroids and comets could be nudged inward as well.

The only thing tilting the scale in favor of protection is that some will get caught in Jupiter’s gravity and crash into the planet.


12 posted on 09/12/2012 2:56:27 PM PDT by cripplecreek (What does it profit a man if he gains the whole world but loses his soul?)
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To: cripplecreek

Nobody was talking about December 21 as the end of the world until you signed up ;-)


13 posted on 09/12/2012 2:56:55 PM PDT by Joe 6-pack (Que me amat, amet et canem meum)
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To: LibWhacker

Thank you Jupiter.

I would hate to think that we would have to rely on Steve Buscemi to do anything.


14 posted on 09/12/2012 2:57:59 PM PDT by waus (FUBO UFCMF, Just in case I stuttered, FUBO)
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To: LibWhacker

Jupiter had it coming.


15 posted on 09/12/2012 3:00:34 PM PDT by Psycho_Bunny (OWS = The Great American Snivel War)
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To: Psycho_Bunny
Jupiter had it coming.

*****************************

LOL!

16 posted on 09/12/2012 3:01:54 PM PDT by trisham (Zen is not easy. It takes effort to attain nothingness. And then what do you have? Bupkis.)
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To: LibWhacker

Amazing. Almost as if God put it out there... :)


17 posted on 09/12/2012 3:03:47 PM PDT by SoFloFreeper
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To: Joe 6-pack

You just better hope I don’t find 3 more FReepers who signed up on the 21st of December.


18 posted on 09/12/2012 3:04:47 PM PDT by cripplecreek (What does it profit a man if he gains the whole world but loses his soul?)
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To: Psycho_Bunny
Jupiter had it coming.

"Jupiter's chickennnnnnnnnnnnnnns...coming home to roost!"

19 posted on 09/12/2012 3:05:20 PM PDT by Disambiguator
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To: Charles Martel

That flash was about the same size as our planet. So yeah, thanks Jupiter! You took one for our team.


20 posted on 09/12/2012 3:07:50 PM PDT by katana (Just my opinions)
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