Amateur Astronomer Spots Possible New Impact Flash At Jupiter

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    RockDoctor writes: A recent flurry of posts to astronomy news sites points to an amateur astronomer spotting a new impact on Jupiter. Every such case documented improves our estimates of how many bodies are flying around in the (inner) solar system, and improves our estimates of how likely we are to get another hit in a year, a decade, or a century. Sky and Telescope has been pulling in more information. SpaceWeather.com has an image of the impact. (Note: some of these images have been “flipped” to an “on sky” orientation, and others haven’t because astronomical telescopes generally produce an inverted image since it requires fewer reflections.) Estimates of the impactor size are unclear, but minimum sizes seem to be in the several kg range. Depending on how long the flash lasted, it could go up into the tons, which is important for estimating the number of potentially hazardous objects in the inner solar system. Space and Telescope’s correspondents put the size at “up to” (important words!) the 30m range (100ft in Tudor measure), which would be around 10,000 tons — a Chelyabinsk 2013-size body. Read more of this story at Slashdot.

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