Another impact with Jupiter, this time was observed in Japan. Photographs showing a bright flash from a cosmic object in the atmosphere of a gas giant have been published in both visible and infrared light.
Jupiter, the largest planet in the solar system, orbits close to the main asteroid belt and is characterized by a strong gravitational pull, and therefore falls victim to cosmic impacts. In September, we reported the sighting of a Brazilian amateur astronomer who captured the flash that an object left behind when it struck a gas giant.
Another type of discovery was made by astronomers in Japan on October 15 at 22.24 local time. The published photos show a bright flash in the atmosphere of the planet’s northern hemisphere, possibly caused by an asteroid impact. A team of researchers led by astronomer Ko Arimatsu from Kyoto University confirmed that they show an event of this kind.
In visible and infrared light
The first time that a flash of light struck Jupiter was observed in visible and infrared light, the Organized Autotelescopes for Serendipitous Event Survey, of which Arimatsu is a member, emphasized on Twitter.
“The flash seemed to last a long time,” said one of the observers.
Impacts against Jupiter
The impact on Jupiter observed on October 15 is the ninth since Comet Shoemaker – Levy 9 was struck in 1994. Its fragments then left traces in the planet’s dense atmosphere for several months. This provided an opportunity to research and learn more about the composition of the gas giant’s atmosphere.
According to some studies, objects with a diameter of at least 45 meters hit the largest planet in the solar system every few months, but even the most accurate monitoring programs for these events may be able to detect only one impact per year, points out space.com.
Main photo source: Ko Arimatsu / Kyoto University