Encountering Jupiter Before J't'p'tan

In Star Wars the planet name that is pronounced most like Jupiter in our Solar System is J't'p'tan (pronounced JEH-TEH-PEH-THAN), a planet in the Doornik-628 System, in the heart of the Deep Core region of the galaxy.

During the summer months in our galaxy we can see Jupiter as one of the brightest objects in our night sky. In this year of 2010, on September 20 and 21 we can see Jupiter the closest it will come to our planet for the next decade, the next time being in 2022. The 4 Galilean moons of Jupiter will be in alignment for an extra cool viewing pleasure. http://science.nasa.gov/science-news/science-at-nasa/2010/15sep_jupiter/  

We still have much to learn about Jupiter, but currently we have confirmed 63 moons. The 4 largest moons are called Galilean Moons, discovered in the year 1610 by Galileo, a famous astronomer and scientist.

When Jupiter was discovered to be the largest, and thus grandest planet in our Solar System, it was named after the Roman Mythology king of the gods, Jupiter. He was also known as the god of the sky and thunder. How appropriate.

Jupiter is the 5th planet from the Sun in our system and is considered to be a gas giant. Jupiter is believed to be mostly comprised of hydrogen, with ¼ of its mass being helium. Thus human life is not sustainable on Jupiter.

Jupiter’s most obvious feature is known as the Great Red Spot, a persistent anticyclonic storm approximately 22° south of the equator. The great red spot is actually larger than our planet, Earth.

Review Questions:

How many moons does Jupiter have to the best of our knowledge?

How many years until Jupiter will be this close to Earth again?

What is a famous feature of Jupiter?

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