Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Jupiter makes temporary moon out of comet!

Between 1949 and 1961 the gravity of planet Jupiter grabbed the comet 147P/Kushida-Muramatsu and held it in orbit. Scientists say that this will happen again within a few decades.

So what happened to the comet once it left Jupiter's orbit?

"...comet Kushida-Muramatsu eventually escaped Jupiter's gravity. It currently circles the sun in the solar system's asteroid belt, between the orbits of Mars and Jupiter." (

The comets orbital path around Jupiter

The comet orbited the planet twice before being flung out into space. The estimated path of comet Kushida-Muramatsu:

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