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Chapter 11 Jovian Planet Systems. Spacecraft to the Outer Solar System. Flybys: Pioneer 10, 11 Voyager 1, 2 Orbiters/ : Galileo, Cassini Landers (Jupiter) (Saturn). Voyager 2 is the only spacecraft to visit all four outer planets. Gas Giant Planets. Our goals for learning

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Spacecraft to the Outer Solar System

Flybys: Pioneer 10, 11 Voyager 1, 2

Orbiters/ : Galileo, Cassini

Landers (Jupiter) (Saturn)

Voyager 2 is the only spacecraft to visit all four outer planets.

gas giant planets
Gas Giant Planets
  • Our goals for learning
  • Are jovian planets all alike?
  • What are jovian planets like on the inside?
  • What is the weather like? (Jupiter as a type example)
jovian ring systems
Jovian Ring Systems
  • All four jovian planets have ring systems, Saturn merely the most obvious.
  • Others have smaller, darker ring particles than Saturn
jovian planet composition
Jovian Planet Composition
  • Jupiter and Saturn
    • Mostly H and He gas
  • Uranus and Neptune
    • Mostly hydrogen compounds: water (H2O), methane (CH4), ammonia (NH3)
    • Some H, He, and rock
density differences
Density Differences
  • Uranus and Neptune are denser than Saturn because they have less H/He, proportionately
density differences8
Density Differences
  • But that explanation doesn’t work for Jupiter….
sizes of jovian planets
Sizes of Jovian Planets
  • Adding mass to a jovian planet compresses the underlying gas layers
sizes of jovian planets10
Sizes of Jovian Planets
  • Greater compression is why Jupiter is not much larger than Saturn even though it is three times more massive
  • Jovian planets with even more mass can be smaller than Jupiter
rotation and shape
Rotation and Shape
  • Jovian planets are not quite spherical because of their rapid rotation
interiors of jovian planets
Interiors of Jovian Planets
  • No solid surface.
  • Layers under high pressure and temperatures.
  • Cores (~10 Earth masses) made of hydrogen compounds, metals & rock
  • The layers are different for the different planets. WHY?
inside jupiter the best understood
Inside Jupiter(the best understood)
  • High pressures inside Jupiter cause phase of hydrogen to change with depth
  • Hydrogen acts like a metal at great depths because its electrons move freely
inside jupiter
Inside Jupiter
  • Core is thought to be made of rock, metals, and hydrogen compounds
  • Core is about same size as Earth but 10 times as massive
comparing jovian interiors
Comparing Jovian Interiors
  • Models suggest cores of jovian planets have similar composition
  • Lower pressures inside Uranus and Neptune mean no metallic hydrogen
jupiter s internal heat
Jupiter’s Internal Heat
  • Jupiter radiates twice as much energy it receives from Sun
  • Energy probably comes from slow contraction of interior (releasing potential energy)
internal heat of other planets
Internal Heat of Other Planets
  • Saturn also radiates twice as much energy it receives from Sun
  • Energy probably comes from differentiation (helium rain)
  • Neptune emits nearly twice as much energy as it recieves, but the source of that energy remains mysterious
colors of the gas giants
high thin haze

high haze

thicker clouds .

thick heavy clouds

Jupiter - high brown and white clouds

Saturn- bands deeper thicker smog haze

Uranus -light blue

Neptune dark blue

Colors of The Gas Giants
  • Colors are temperature controlled
  • Decreasing temp. : increasing methane clouds
  • methane clouds reflect blue light

COLDER