Did a comet really crash into Jupiter?

Yes, between July 16 and July 22, 1994, several pieces of Comet Shoemaker-Levy 9 collided with Jupiter. It was the first collision of two solar system objects ever observed. The comet had been captured and broken apart by Jupiter's strong gravity. More than 20 fragments of the comet crashed into Jupiter's southern hemisphere at speeds of about 130,000 miles (210,000 km) per hour. The impacts released a lot of energy and created several large, dark scars in Jupiter's atmosphere which lasted for several weeks.


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Learn about IRAS, the first infrared telescope launched into Earth's orbit!