Jupiter Takes New Hit for the Team

Flash believed to be collision with asteroid or comet

By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff

Posted Sep 11, 2012 8:16 AM CDT | Updated Sep 15, 2012 12:43 PM CDT

(Newser) – For the third time in four years, Jupiter appears to have been hit by something big enough to have done a lot of damage to our planet or any other unlucky enough to be in its way. A flash on Jupiter captured by amateur astronomers is believed to have been caused by an asteroid or comet hitting the gas giant after being drawn in by its gravitational pull, reports NBC. "It's kind of a scary proposition to see how often Jupiter gets hit," says an astronomer who captured the flash on video. Some scientists believe that without Jupiter in the neighborhood to absorb cosmic threats, life on Earth would never have been able to survive.

The bright spot at the left has got astronomers excited.
The bright spot at the left has got astronomers excited.   (George Hall)
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