Image of Comet P/Shoemaker-Levy 9

Comet Shoemaker-Levy 9 Collision with Jupiter


Do not go gentle into that good night.
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.
- Dylan Thomas


 Shoemaker/Levy 9 Collision with Jupiter CD-ROMs available

From July 16 through July 22, 1994, fragments of Comet P/Shoemaker-Levy 9 collided with Jupiter, with dramatic effect. This was the first collision of two solar system bodies ever to be observed. Shoemaker-Levy 9 consists of 20 discernable fragments with diameters estimated at up to 2 kilometers, which impacted the planet at 60 km/s. The impacts resulted in plumes many thousands of kilometers high, hot "bubbles" of gas in the atmosphere, and large dark "scars" on the atmosphere which have lifetimes at least on the order of weeks. Smaller bits and dust continue to impact the planet. Shoemaker-Levy 9 is gone, but as the Earth- and space-based images show, it did not go quietly.

 Images of the Collisions
 The Comet
 The Impact

Observations

There were extensive observations of the comet Shoemaker-Levy 9 / Jupiter impact, involving almost all Earth-based observatories and many orbiting and interplanetary spacecraft, including the Hubble Space Telescope, Galileo, Ulysses, and Voyager 2.

 Hubble Space Telescope
 Galileo
 Ulysses and Voyager 2

 International Conference on Shoemaker-Levy 9


 Comet and Asteroid Home Page
 NSSDCA Planetary Home Page

[NASA Logo]
Author/Curator:
Dr. David R. Williams, dave.williams@nasa.gov
NSSDCA, Mail Code 690.1
NASA Goddard Space Flight Center
Greenbelt, MD 20771
+1-301-286-1258


NASA Official: Ed Grayzeck, edwin.j.grayzeck@nasa.gov
Last Updated: 04 February 2005, DRW