Minimum credit line: Image courtesy of NRAO/AUI and Imke de Pater, UCB/VLA/NRAO(for details, see Image Use Policy).

About this Image

This pair of images shows the planet Jupiter before (left - June 24, 1994) and after (right July 19, 1994) fragments of the comet Shoemaker-Levy 9 struck the planet in 1994. The disk of the planet is in the center of the images. The bright red spots are regions high above Jupiter's "surface" where electrons interacting with the planet's intense magnetic field are producing strong radio emission. These "radiation belts" are similar to the Van Allen Radiation Belts discovered above the Earth in 1958. The pair of images shows the effect of the comet impacts on this pattern of radio emission.

A 3-dimensional mapping of Jupiters radiation belts by the Australian Telescopes Compact Array can be found from Dr. R. Saults webpage at http://www.atnf.csiro.au/people/rsault/jupiter/movies/.

Investigator(s):  Imke de Pater

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Technical Data

    Telescope VLA 
    Date of Observation 1994-07-00 
    Type of Observation Continuum Observations 
    Band L 
    Wavelength 20 cm 
    Frequency 1.4 GHz 
    Technical Caption  


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