HRI image of Jupiter during Shoemaker-Levy collision
Credit: Hunter Waite, Randy Gladstone, and Southwest Research Institute

X-ray Emission from a Cometary Impact

This is a soft X-ray image of Jupiter obtained by the High Resolution Imager (HRI) on the ROSAT X-ray observatory. This image includes data obtained both before and during the impact of comet Shoemaker-Levy 9 in July, 1994. This image shows the local-time behavior of Jovian X-ray emissions, and indicates that both the auroral and newly-discovered equatorial X-rays are much brighter on the afternoon (right) side than on the morning (left) side of the planet, perhaps indicating the presence of a magnetosphere-wide dusk-to-dawn electric field.

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Each week the HEASARC brings you new, exciting and beautiful images from X-ray and Gamma ray astronomy. Check back each week and be sure to check out the HEAPOW archive!

Page Author: Dr. Michael F. Corcoran
Last modified June 28, 2001