Dropping a nuke on (in) Jupiter

I laughed when everyone (on another site) was panicking at NASA dropping that nuclear powered satellite on Jupiter…


Interesting, is it possible?

It’s crap. We’ve been over this in another thread.

Net result: Nada.

That “Galileo thing” – Another thread on this topic, where those fears are roundly debunked.

The Bad Astronomer speaks.

If you thinks that’s crazy I heard that everyone on the face of the earth has a little bit of, I think it was, plutonium in then thanks to NASA. Apparently one of their early nuclear powered satellites exploded before it left the atmosphere. Thanks NASA.

Cite, please.

I don’t know about plutonium, but I have some mercury in me, and I’m sure pretty much everyone in North America does… darn heavy metals.

No need to blame NASA, Insufferable Jerk…the Russians have done it at least a couple of times themselves. :smiley:

I’ll dig up a cite.

(P.S.: Great name)

From SpaceLink:

NPS: Nuclear Power Source
RTG: Radioisotopic Thermoelectric Generators

If the Schumaker-Levy comet (http://www.seds.org/sl9/sl9.html) didn’t do anything lasting, a single nuclear powered spacecraft won’t.

Unless you’re on Star Trek or some other sci-fi show, where the physics can react that way depending onw hat you want the plot to be like. :slight_smile:

In order for Jupiter to become a star, it would have to be a minimum of 41 times larger. That is, you’d have to smack it with about 40 other planets of Jovian mass to begin that gigantic nuclear furnace thing. And if you wanted a sun “just like ours”, you’d need to need to up Jupiter’s mass by a factor of 1000. Not likely.


Plan Nine from Outer Space? :slight_smile:

Perhaps I didn’t make myself clear.

I didn’t think Jupiter would turn into a star or the impact would have any lasting affect, also I have no particular concerns about nuclear powered spacecraft (in fact I’m all for them, I’d dust of Project Orion if I thought it’d help manned space flight)

What I was wondering was if it was plausible that that mysterious black spot was a result of the probes dive?

Many things are possible. Plausibility is another thing entirely.

Jupiter’s atmosphere is a very complex structure (or system). Large “spots” of many different colours have been observed at various times since we first developed optics fine enough to resolve tham. This new black spot is not out of the range of previously observed phenomena (pa di pa didi).

I wouldn’t worry about it.

Here you go Doctor… Apparently that PHD wasn’t in esoteric knowledge.


That was suppose to have a smiley after it…

That was suppose to have a smiley after it…sorry.

Is this the “black spot” you spoke of?