What we learned from Comet Shoemaker-Levy 9
Scientists have learned a great deal from the crash of comet Shoemaker-Levy 9.
- Scientists traced the orbit of the comet backwards in time to guess its origin.
- The crash of a comet like Shoemaker-Levy 9 might have happened more than once. A search of moons showed that, indeed, strings of broken comets had hit other solar system objects in the past.
- Signs of the explosions of the comet remained in Jupiter's atmosphere for 2 years.
- Scientists still debate whether SL-9 was a comet or an asteroid.