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bmpbmp
2004-Mar-11, 03:35 PM
Hi guys,

Is it possible that Jupitor is at it's closest approach from earth since the past 3 billions years. Is that possible.

Eta C
2004-Mar-11, 04:44 PM
If it is, so what? More than likely it's similar to the situation with Mars last year. That is, its closest approach in hundreds of years is only about 1% different than its average distance. There not much difference between 778.4 x 10^6 km and 778.399 x 10 ^6 km.

(by the way, it's spelled 'Jupiter')

Manchurian Taikonaut
2004-Mar-11, 04:44 PM
Earths Aphelion 152 * 10/\6 km

Jupiters Perihelion 740 * 10/\6 km

http://www.mit.edu/people/alycem/pic-jupiter_comet.gif

what is the orbit right now?

Here's a calculation in AU, it's not very accurate more of a guess, finding that the closest Jupiter-Earth separation is 5.1 AU - 1 AU = 4.1 AU ??

aurora
2004-Mar-11, 05:19 PM
I would suspect that no software program can accurately run the clock back and determine exact orbital positions of the planets over 3 billion years. A few thousand, or tens of thousands, I would believe. But not billions.

And you already missed opposition. It was March 3.

here's the script for Horkheimer's show about it:

http://www.starhustler.com/scripts0SG0408.html

milli360
2004-Mar-11, 05:29 PM
If it is, so what? More than likely it's similar to the situation with Mars last year. That is, its closest approach in hundreds of years is only about 1% different than its average distance.
Depends (http://www.badastronomy.com/phpBB/viewtopic.php?p=215244#215244). What do you mean by average distance? If you mean, average closest approach (which happens every couple years) then last year's approach was a lot closer than average.

Even if you mean the average approach at Mar's perihelion (which happens every 15 to 17 years), the percentage was still quite a bit higher than 1%.

Eta C
2004-Mar-11, 05:46 PM
If it is, so what? More than likely it's similar to the situation with Mars last year. That is, its closest approach in hundreds of years is only about 1% different than its average distance.
Depends (http://www.badastronomy.com/phpBB/viewtopic.php?p=215244#215244). What do you mean by average distance? If you mean, average closest approach (which happens every couple years) then last year's approach was a lot closer than average.

Even if you mean the average approach at Mar's perihelion (which happens every 15 to 17 years), the percentage was still quite a bit higher than 1%.

Well, I was pulling the 1% out of a certain oriface. The 778.4 x10^6 km is the semi-major axis of the orbit. In any case, my point stands. The difference between this closest approach and any other close approach is likely to be insignificant. It's definitely insignificant as regards to any impact it will have on life as we know it.

milli360
2004-Mar-11, 06:25 PM
The difference between this closest approach and any other close approach is likely to be insignificant.
I calculated at that link that the close approach to Mars in March of 2012 will be 80% farther than the one last August. That's a lot more than 1%.

Starbuck
2004-Mar-11, 06:40 PM
(by the way, it's spelled 'Jupiter')

He misspells it evey time he mentions it. It's either low-level trolling, or he's not getting that he's doing it. Either way, not likely to change anytime soon.

tngolfplayer
2004-Mar-11, 06:46 PM
I missed March 3rd, but last night it was beautiful. The red spot was visible the whole time I was out. Later this month(22nd I think) 3 of Jupiters moons will be traversing the face of Jupiter at the same time, with another one going behind. Should be a great sight.

Eta C
2004-Mar-11, 06:47 PM
The difference between this closest approach and any other close approach is likely to be insignificant.
I calculated at that link that the close approach to Mars in March of 2012 will be 80% farther than the one last August. That's a lot more than 1%.

Fine, so shoot me. :roll: I've already admitted that I made up the 1% off the top of my head. Will this impact life on Earth (which is the unspoken question in the OP based on the poster's past history)? Not just no. Hell no!

JohnOwens
2004-Mar-11, 07:49 PM
The difference between this closest approach and any other close approach is likely to be insignificant.
I calculated at that link that the close approach to Mars in March of 2012 will be 80% farther than the one last August. That's a lot more than 1%.

Earth perihelion: 147,100,000 km
Mars aphelion: 249,200,000 km
Max. difference: 102,200,000 km

Earth aphelion: 152,100,000 km
Mars perihelion: 206,600,000 km
Min. difference: 54,500,000 km

Max. change in closest approach: 87.5% of min., 46.7% of max. So it can certainly be greater than 1%. Now let's try it for Jupiter itself.

Earth perihelion: 147,100,000 km
Jupiter aphelion: 816,100,000 km
Max. difference: 669,000,000 km

Earth aphelion: 152,100,000 km
Jupiter perihelion: 740,700,000 km
Min. difference: 588,600,000 km

Max. change: 13.7% of min., 12.0% of max.

It's still not going to make a lick of difference to us here on Earth* either way, though, even if it was at 20% of the usual closest approach.

*Aside from all the astronomy buffs admiring the lovely view 8) , and the Planet X types telling us it's going to flip our poles or something and bring about the end of civilization as we know it. :roll: