Section 2: Inner Planets

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Transcript Section 2: Inner Planets

Section 2: Inner Planets
• Terrestrial vs. Jovian:
Classifying Planets
• Terrestrial-like Earth: Mercury, Venus, Earth and Mars.
• Jovian-huge gas planets: Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and
• Inner vs. Outer:
• Inner-found before the asteroid belt: Mercury, Venus, Earth,
and Mars.
• Outer-found after the asteroid belt: Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus,
and Neptune.
• Inferior vs. Superior:
• Inferior-between the Sun and Earth: Mercury and Venus.
• Superior-after Earth: Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and
• Named after the Roman Fleet
Footed God
• The smallest planet
• Closest to the Sun
• Heavily cratered
• Large iron core (70% of
Mercury’s volume)
• No atmosphere
• 427 (800F) to -127 ºC (-197F)
• The year is only 88 days
• Spins the slowest on its axis, but it
revolves the fastest around the sun
• 2nd from Sun
• Thick atmosphere of Carbon
Dioxide- runaway greenhouse effect
• Shines the brightest in our night sky
• Most volcanoes in solar system of
the planets
• Spins backwards
• Up to 900 ºF
• Named after the Roman goddess of
beauty and love- often called
Earth’s twin
• Clouds of sulfuric acid
• Magellan, Cassini Huygens and
MESSENGER have all flown by
• Earth: 3rd from Sun
• Temperatures
perfect for water in
solid, liquid, and gas
• Has ozone to protect
from the Sun’s
harmful radiation.
• 70% water, 30%
• 4th from Sun
• ½ the size of Earth
• Red planet- from rusted iron in crust.
• Has frozen water under ice caps
• Largest volcano- Olympus Mons
• Largest Canyon- Valles Marineris
• 2 moons: Phobos (fear) and Deimos
• Cold: -100 ºC night, just above
freezing during day (-148 F)
• Named after Roman God of War
• 24.5 hour day
• Has seasons like Earth
NASA on Mars
The Mariner 9
Viking 1 and Viking 2
Global Surveyor
Mars Odyssey
Spirit and Opportunity Land Rovers
Mars Pathfinder
Section 3: Outer Planets
• 5th from the Sun
• Largest planet (1,323 Earths)
• Named after Roman God of all Gods
• Mostly hydrogen and helium
• The Great Red Spot- a approx. 400
year old hurricane big enough to hold
2-3 Earths.
• Spins fastest on its axis
• Has lightning in clouds
• Has 50 named moons and 14 other
moons not named
• Has 3 rings of dust
• Studied by Galileo space probe
Jupiter’s 4 Big Moons
• 4 huge “Galilean Moons”:
• Io: most volcanically active body in solar system.
• Europa: mostly rock with a thick, cracked but
smooth crust of ice; deep, warm ocean that holds
twice as much water as Earth’s oceans.
• Ganymede: Larger than Mercury, most likely had
a volcanic past. Likely to have an ocean.
• Callisto: Cratered and most likely covered in a
salty ocean.
• 6th from Sun
• Second largest planet (752 Earths)
• Named after Roman Lord of the
• Mostly hydrogen and helium
• It’s low density would allow it to
float in water
• Known as the ringed planet- has
largest and most complex ring
• Made of ice and rock
• 7 Rings A-G: Cassini division is
the gap between rings
Saturn’s Moons
• Saturn has over 30 moons.
• The largest moon is Titan:
• Larger than Mercury
• Has areas of water ice
• Has areas composed of hydrocarbonsorganic compounds that contain hydrogen
and carbon.
• All living things are made of carbon.
• Scientists are interested in the
possibility of life here.
• 7th from the Sun
• 3rd largest (Fits only 64 Earths)
• 27 moons
• Mostly hydrogen, helium & 2% methane
• Looks bluish-green in color
• Tilted 98º- rotates on its side
• 11 rings- dark and narrow
• Father of Neptune and Jupiter
• May have slushy water
• 5 large moons- Miranda
• This planet was discovered using mathnobody was even looking for it.
• 8th from Sun
• 4th largest (58 Earths)
• Has rings
• Has at least 13 moons: Triton, the largest, has
geysers that erupt methane and nitrogen
• Has a Great Dark Spot “Wizard’s Eye”
• Named after Roman God of the Sea
• Similar atmosphere to Uranus, but more
methane, so it looks even bluer.
• Farthest from the sun
• It takes 248 years to orbit the sun
• Now considered a dwarf planet
• Named after the Roman God of the
• Has 5 moons: the biggest one is named
Charon which is about ½ the size of Pluto
• Solid ice-rock surface
Comets , Asteroids, and Meteoroids
• A comet, is composed of ice, dust and rock
particles mixed with methane and ammonia.
• Halley’s comet appears every 76 years.
• It will appear again in 2061.
• An asteroid is a rocky object formed from material
similar to the planets- found in asteroid belts
• A meteoroid is a rocky object formed from
asteroids or comets.
• If it burns up in our atmosphere it is a shooting
• When it hits Earth it is called a meteorite
• Sedna has been labeled a distant
• It is smaller than Pluto, but bigger than a
• It is three times farther away from Earth
than Pluto