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Did anyone see Shoemaker-Levy 9 hit Jupiter?

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#1 Telescopic

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Posted 24 January 2014 - 08:10 PM

I was a kid when this happened, and not all that interested in astronomy. But based on the views of Jupiter through my 8" dob I'm certain some of that event, or the aftermath would have been visible. What a sight it would have been.

#2 MikeBOKC

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Posted 24 January 2014 - 08:37 PM

Yes there were some quite visible smudges. I observed it through my Meade 826 reflector. One of the high points of my time in this hobby for sure.

#3 Rick Woods

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Posted 24 January 2014 - 09:01 PM

I didn't see it hit, but I sure saw the huge, spooky dark spots Mike mentions (also through a Meade 826). Like nothing I've ever seen before or since.

#4 Michael Rapp

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Posted 24 January 2014 - 09:33 PM

Yes there were some quite visible smudges. I observed it through my Meade 826 reflector. One of the high points of my time in this hobby for sure.


Fascinating! I also observed it with my 826! I distinctly remember the black splotches rotating into view.

I am so lucky that it hit in July of that year as in August I went away to be a freshman at college and would have been without my scope!

#5 Telescopic

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Posted 24 January 2014 - 10:07 PM

I distinctly remember the black splotches rotating into view.


That must have been incredible to see! :jump:

#6 Michael Rapp

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Posted 24 January 2014 - 11:42 PM

It was and I am exceptionally lucky and happy to have seen it. I do deeply regret not looking at it as often as I could, but that summer was crazily busy for me, with all of the expected distractions of transitioning from high school to college.

#7 BrooksObs

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Posted 25 January 2014 - 12:14 AM

Indeed, I glimpsed the comets themselves on one night about a month or two before impact using my 20" scope. After they had impacted I followed the scars they left in Jupiter's atmosphere for many weeks thereafter, noting them in apertures as small as just a 60mm refractor. Quite an event.

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#8 azure1961p

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Posted 25 January 2014 - 01:06 AM

Yes I saw it Ive several nights through much summer haze - steady but filtered down by the humid sky's. I was true believer this was all going to be a flop. That the anticipation was all hype to sell whatever to whomever and basically at the root if it all - the inability for the humans calculating this to truly take in how huge Jupiter would swallow these whole without so much as a hiccup.

I was floored. First night - centered in the CM these two dark ovular eyes looking back at me clearer than any red spot had ever shown . Obvious at 70x. Not black per se, but an ashen grey of strong contrast.

I completely underestimated what would happen. This was one for the books and probably the most rarefied phenomena ill ever see telescopically.

Pete
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#9 star drop

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Posted 25 January 2014 - 06:17 AM

I also saw the impact marks through a 25" telescope. Initially they gave me the impression that their centers were deeper down into Jupiter's atmosphere, somewhat like seeing fuzzy dark floating doughnuts. Looking again after a few days had passed the three dimensional appearance was gone.

#10 Rich (RLTYS)

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Posted 25 January 2014 - 06:48 AM

I saw a number of brownish markings of Jupiter with my friends 8" Schmidt Cas. They were most impressive looking. :cool:

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#11 Rick Woods

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Posted 25 January 2014 - 10:21 AM

Yes there were some quite visible smudges. I observed it through my Meade 826 reflector. One of the high points of my time in this hobby for sure.


Fascinating! I also observed it with my 826! I distinctly remember the black splotches rotating into view.

I am so lucky that it hit in July of that year as in August I went away to be a freshman at college and would have been without my scope!


The Meade 826 was the workhorse of the day, and a fabulous telescope. I still have mine, and it's still in pretty new condition. I believe it's the best of all my telescopes.

#12 David Gray

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Posted 25 January 2014 - 11:19 AM

I arranged a week off work with hopes for this: and got a good run of clear albeit slightly hazy evenings!

Jupiter was then well to the west and close to disappearing behind the rooftops (altitude ~15º) and I knew that the sun would be close to setting time. So as Jupiter was close to 90º from the sun I applied an old-time trick of using a polariser which dramatically darkens the sky relative to the planet at that particular elongation (+/- c.25º). On the run up to the event I mentioned my trials with this to John Rogers who admitted that this was a then largely forgotten practice! Also I found that a W#8 yellow filter was an additional help; and of course used the 16.3” D-K x262 & x348.

My first catch (July 17) was the rather elusive ‘C’ fragment scar on the SPR – this left me a little pessimistic. Then next night it was the ‘G’ fragment scar: this stunned me; and ran in the house to phone David Graham. He at first seemed to think I had got Ganymede or it’s shadow: I said no this is much bigger and must be at least Earth-size and in any case at that time those transits were across the NPR. He phoned me back after looking and I could detect the tremble in his voice….!

After that it was just one wow after another – if only it had been nearer midnight with Jupiter at an altitude such as currently!
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#13 Rutilus

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Posted 25 January 2014 - 12:01 PM

I did not actually see any of the fragments hit Jupiter, but I sure did see the aftermath of dark markings.
I was using a Vixen 102mm f/10 Achromat refractor, it was a great event.

#14 ROBERT FREE

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Posted 25 January 2014 - 02:06 PM

I saw them with my 12 1/2 f-8 relector that I had way back then.

#15 Dean Norris

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Posted 25 January 2014 - 04:12 PM

I drove over to San Jose to view this amazing event. Santa Cruz was fogged out which happens often in the summer. I observed the event not far Lick Observatory but in the valley not far from the road that takes you to Lick. The seeing that night was great and the view was spectacular. This is right up with the time when rings of Saturn occulted some stars which twinkled as they passed through the rings.

Dean

#16 Gil V

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Posted 25 January 2014 - 04:25 PM

Saw the dark impact spots in my 4" SCT. Hated that scope. Bought my Meade shortly after.

#17 Telescopic

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Posted 25 January 2014 - 05:23 PM

I'm so jealous. I hope something like this happens again but it is unlikely.
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#18 azure1961p

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Posted 26 January 2014 - 12:06 AM

Grossly unlikely but there's other things too and it wasn't that long ago a CN member actually imaged an impact on Jupiter reminiscent of shoemaker-Levy but on a fraction of .the scale .

David - if it had good altitude like now - the structure seen would have been phenomenal. Even in Pickering 5. The filtration from summer haze at that altitude blotted out everything into the most basic smoothed forms for me. Still night after night it was astonishing. The best night several nights later had a veritable chain of pact scars of varying shapes. Ill never forget it.

I DID sketch the impacts but they disappeared when my logs were thrown out.

Pete

#19 Rick Woods

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Posted 26 January 2014 - 12:30 AM

I DID sketch the impacts but they disappeared when my logs were thrown out.


Your WHAT!!????? :scared:

#20 David Gray

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Posted 26 January 2014 - 02:29 AM

I DID sketch the impacts but they disappeared when my logs were thrown out.

Pete


Oh no now you’ve done it Pete - drawings: not seen mine for years and I have recently been searching my shambolic files for other things and not caught sight …….
I think John Rogers has the originals and he used some in his BAA Journal report.

Come to think of it he passed some on to the authors of “The Great Comet Crash” – Spencer/Mitton. Not so much those I miss as the ones I got after conjunction showing the aftermath. It was a mid-December morning and had just finished nightshift when I spotted Jupiter in an observable position. Clouds were building in the distance and had a hectic bike ride home (3 miles mostly uphill) and just got there in time to open up and grab that first post-impact drawing.

I don’t think that drawing found its way into the Journal but it is in the book which I have not seen for some years. I think/hope my sister still has it – borrowed to show her friends.

As the drawings went to the authors via John and not directly from me, by the time it came out it was very much out of mind. Then one day we were in a bookshop with our two sons (Stuart & Alan); when Stuart rushed over and said “Look dad some of your drawings are in here”. Upon which Alan dashed over to his mother shouting “Mam, dad’s drawings are in a book! So while we were looking the shop-lady came up and snatched the book. After my wife explained she said “Oh terribly sorry I thought he said his dad was drawing in a book”. To make amends we got the book at a generous discount! :o :)

Dave
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#21 Telescopic

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Posted 26 January 2014 - 04:34 AM

Grossly unlikely but there's other things too and it wasn't that long ago a CN member actually imaged an impact on Jupiter reminiscent of shoemaker-Levy but on a fraction of .the scale .


I just looked it up and there were at least two in the last few years!

#22 azure1961p

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Posted 26 January 2014 - 10:42 AM

David,

That's a very humorous account -and satisfying that your work was preserved in being published like that. The clerks misinterpretation was funny though ! It would make sense yours was a morning object and mine an evening thing. A particular bother I didn't appreciate was nosy passerbys as I could not see this part of the horizon from my home so I was out and about town in the country. One priest brought train of altar boys that ended up taking so long to look that best night view was a few minutes for me. Another person wanted to kno my life story and ended with in no uncertain terms "well OK - Im just checking you out" and there was no flirtatious manner or levity in her voice. It was still dusk out so the guy with the long white tube telescope drew attention. It was worth it but I realized I am no sidewalk astronomer at all! If ever you find the pics Id love to see it Dave .

Tel, yes I was surprised to learn they do occur on Jupiter . I wonder if prior to Shoemaker-Levy9 the transient spots of cometary (or other) impacts was just written off as a barge or anonymous storm spot.

Pete

#23 aa6ww

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Posted 28 January 2014 - 11:15 AM

I watched it religiously with a AP 6" F12 Super Planetary over and over and over. Its what got me hooked on owning an APO because of all the details that particular scope was showing, which others could not.

..Ralph

#24 David Gray

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Posted 28 January 2014 - 04:16 PM

If ever you find the pics Id love to see it Dave .


Pete:

Finally found the book after searches at my sister's and her two daughter's respective housholds!

Attached is a compilation of some croppped/re-arranged scans.

Cheers,
Dave.

Attached Files


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#25 SabiaJD

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Posted 28 January 2014 - 08:54 PM

Was fortunate to have some clear skies to view the "L" and "G" impact scars on Jupiter with the 9.5" f/15 Clark refractor scope.

Started viewing in twilight skies on July 17, 1994 UT. My drawings show a dark spot and bow shape of both "L" and "G".

This was also seen by other observer with me that night. Very good seeing conditions.

I setup to image Jupiter with my Nikon F2 using eyepiece projection on color slide film. Does not do justice to the view in the eyepiece.


http://lackawannaast...ohn-sabia/jd...

After reviewing my log and photo log books, I discovered this photo date is WRONG. This was taken on July 20, 1994 UT.
Timing of "L"
Preceeding 0:37
Middle 0:51
Following 1:15

John D Sabia






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