Jupiter is the largest planet in the solar system and is easily visible in the night sky. jupiter's mass (1.9×10^27kg [4.2×10^27 pounds]) is nearly two and a half times the mass of the rest f the solar system's planets combined.Jupiter's volume, filled mostly with gas, is 1,316 times that of Earth. The fifth planet from the Sun, Jupiter's year is 11.86 Earth years but is dai is short, only 9 hours and fifty-five minutes. Jupiter resembles a small star: its composition, like the Sun's and puts out over 100 times more heat than Earth. if Jupiter had been about 50 to 100 time larger, it might have evolved into a star rather than a planet

Historic Observations of Jupiter

Jupiter has intrigued humans since antiquity.It is named for the king of the Roman gods, and most of its twenty-eight moons are named the gods may lovers. In 1609 and 1610, italian mathematician and astronomer Galileo Galilei and German astronomer Simon Marius began telescopic studies of Jupiter and its system. Galileo is credited with the discovery of Jupiter's four largest moons: Io, Europa, Ganymede, and Callisto, now called Galilean satellites in his honor. These moons had an impact on the thinking of those times.It was believed then that Earth was the center of the universe and that all the planets and moons revolved around Earth.Galileo's observations showed that the four moons revolved around Jupiter, not Earth. The discovery contributed to Galileo's doom. He was condemned by the Catholic Church, forced to recant his discovery, and only in 1992 did Pope John Paul II agree that Galileo was right to support Copernicanism As telescopes improved, other astronomers continued to observe Jupiter and to study its colorful bands and the lo ng-lived storm known as the Greath Red Spot. Twenty-four other smaller satellites have been discovere, from Amalthea in 1892 to leda in 1974 to twelve new moons in 2001. Observations from Earth showed that Jupiter has a massive magnetophere and that the planet emits radiation at radio wabvelenghts. From this, astronomers deduced that Jupier is sorrounded by radiation belts, similar to Earth's Van Allen radiation belts, and that the planet must have a strong magnetic fiekdl.

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