The planet Jupiter sits amidst its moons in this astrophotographer image.
Veteran night sky photographer John Chumack took this image on March 8. "Seeing is believing ... so I went down to lower power to get Jupiter and the nicely placed Galilean moons," Chumack wrote in an email to Space.com referencing his imaging equipment.
Jupiter is shining bright in the nighttime sky now, and should be a brilliant target throughout the northern spring and summer, according
Chumack ran the chip ROI at 1280 x 400 @30fps to fit in all the moons. He used the QHY5IIL CCD camera, (1800 frames) 600 frames each RGB, stacked in Registax, then RGB combined in Maxim DL.
With a total of 67 known moons — including four large moons known as the Galilean satellites — Jupiter almost qualifies as a solar system unto itself. In January 1610, Italian astronomer Galileo Galilei discovered four of Jupiter's moons — now called Io, Europa, Ganymede, and Callisto. Galileo’s discovery was pivotal point in the history of astronomy as his observation revealed that not all celestial bodies revolved around the Earth. Until that time, Earth was thought to be the center of the universe.
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