the outer planets


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the outer planets

  1. 1. The Outer Planets
  2. 2. Jupiter <ul><li>Jupiter – fifth planet from the sun, largest in the solar system </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Atmosphere – primarily hydrogen and helium </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Below atmosphere, liquid hydrogen and helium are suspected </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Solid rocky core may exist below liquid level </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>The Great Red Spot is the most spectacular of Jupiter’s many high pressure storms </li></ul></ul></ul>
  3. 3. Jupiter has at least 61 moons – four are relatively large and have atmospheres <ul><li>Io – is very volcanically active; the closest large moon to Jupiter </li></ul><ul><li>Europa – composed mostly of rock; may have an ocean of water under a thick layer of ice </li></ul><ul><li>Ganymede – largest moon in the solar system, even larger than mercury </li></ul><ul><li>Callisto – cratered rock and ice crust may surround a salty ocean and rock core </li></ul>
  4. 4. Saturn – sixth planet from the Sun, second largest in the solar system, lowest density <ul><li>Thick outer atmosphere of hydrogen, helium, ammonia, methane, and water vapor </li></ul><ul><li>May have a small rocky core </li></ul><ul><li>Each large ring composed of thousands of ringlets of ice and rock particles </li></ul><ul><li>Has at least 31 moons </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Largest moon, Titan , is larger than Mercury </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Thick atmosphere on Titan prevent scientist from seeing surface </li></ul></ul>
  5. 5. Largest moon, Titan , is larger than Mercury Thick atmosphere on Titan prevent scientist from seeing surface
  6. 7. Uranus – seventh planet from the sun, large and gaseous <ul><li>Has thin dark rings </li></ul><ul><li>Atmosphere of hydrogen, helium, and methane </li></ul><ul><li>Methane makes the planet blue-green in color </li></ul><ul><li>Axis of rotation nearly perpendicular to plane of orbit </li></ul>
  7. 8. Neptune – usually the eighth planet from the sun, large and gaseous <ul><li>Bluish-green-colored atmosphere similar to that of Uranus </li></ul><ul><li>Storms on Neptune reveal an active and rapidly changing atmosphere </li></ul><ul><li>Has at least eleven moons , of which pinkish Triton is the largest </li></ul>
  8. 9. <ul><li>Has at least eleven moons , of which pinkish Triton is the largest </li></ul>
  9. 10. Pluto – usually the ninth planet from the sun occasionally closer to the Sun than Neptune <ul><li>Has a thin atmosphere and a solid rocky surface </li></ul><ul><li>Discovered in 1978, moon Charon is half the planets size </li></ul><ul><li>Hubble Space Telescope reveals group of icy comets named Kuiper Belt beyond Neptune’s orbit </li></ul>
  10. 12. Comets – dust and rock particles combined with frozen water, methane, and ammonia <ul><li>Halley’s comet orbits the sun every 76 years </li></ul><ul><li>Oort Cloud – large group of comets surrounding solar system beyond Pluto </li></ul><ul><li>Amateur astronomers discovered comet Hale-Bopp in 1995 </li></ul>
  11. 13. Comet structure – large dirty snowball of frozen rock and ice <ul><li>Ice and dust vaporize as comet nears the Sun </li></ul><ul><li>Solar wind pushes on gas and dust in the coma, causing particles to form a tail that always points away from the Sun </li></ul><ul><li>Eventually, most of the ice in the comet’s nucleus vaporizes, leaving only small particles </li></ul>
  12. 14. Small pieces of the old comet’s nucleus <ul><li>Meteoroid – name given to small pieces of comet when they move through space </li></ul>
  13. 15. <ul><li>Meteor – small meteoroid that burns up in Earths atmosphere </li></ul>
  14. 16. <ul><li>Meteor Showers – occur when Earth’s orbit passes through a group of meteoroids that enter the atmosphere </li></ul>
  15. 17. <ul><li>Meteorite – meteoroid that strikes the Earth </li></ul>
  16. 18. Asteroid – rock similar to that which formed the planets <ul><li>Most asteroids lie in an asteroid belt located between Mars and Jupiter. </li></ul><ul><li>Jupiter’s gravity may have kept these asteroids from forming a planet </li></ul><ul><li>Some planets’ moons may be asteroids pulled from the asteroid belt </li></ul><ul><li>Asteroid sizes range from very tiny to 940 km in diameter </li></ul><ul><li>The Near Earth Asteroid Rendezvous probe indicates asteroid 433 Eros has been in many collisions over time </li></ul>