Tuesday, July 21, 2009
An amateur Australian astronomer looking through his backyard telescope has discovered that a large comet or asteroid has crashed into Jupiter, creating a hole the size of the Earth in the planet’s atmosphere.
Anthony Wesley, 44, a computer programmer who lives in a small town outside the capital, Canberra, discovered a large scar on Jupiter when he was photographing the giant gaseous planet.
He tipped off Nasa about his discovery, and images taken by the US space agency’s infrared telescope in Hawaii show a scar in the atmosphere near the south pole of the planet.
In a remarkable twist of fate, the discovery was made on the 40th anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing and the 15th anniversary of another large comet strike on Jupiter.
This article was posted: Tuesday, July 21, 2009 at 3:11 am