Images of Jupiter and Saturn and some related info

After a close look  at planet  Mars in a previous post , here are images and info related to Jupiter and Saturn.

Jupiter is the biggest planet in the solar system , fifth from the Sun between Mars and Saturn.It
was named after the Roman king of the gods.

This first image of Jupiter shows the planet with the (multicolored) ring system surrounding it.The Grest Red Spot is also visible (image made with Universe Sandbox).

Jupiter rings and Great Red Spot

The faint diffuse ring system  of Jupiter was  identified by the Voyager 1 spacecraft in 1979.The
ring system consists mostly of dust particles , and comprises three main parts: the halo closest to
Jupiter, the main ring ,and the gossamer ring outside the main ring.

The Great Red Spot (GRS) of Jupiter is a huge high pressure anti-cyclonic storm , similar to a big
hurricane.Three planets each having the same size of the Earth could comfortably fit in it.
The image below gives a detailed view of the GRS and its surroundings (made with Starry Night).

Great Red Spot

Next is a picture of Saturn with its ( multicolored ) system of rings .Planet Earth is shown to the right of Saturn. Image made with Universe Sandbox.

Saturn rings and Earth

Saturn is the second largest planet in the solar system after Jupiter.
Saturn has bright rings made of lots of small particles having sizes from a centimeter to a few
meters to more than a kilometer.The particles of the rings are composed mainly of aggregated
water ice pieces and some rocks.The rings extend away from Saturn and have a very large
diameter ,but they are very thin and have a thickness of less than one kilometer.Galileo first
observed the rings in 1610 ,but he thought they were large moons on both sides of planet Saturn.
A few decades later in 1655 Christian Huygens explained that Saturn was in fact surrounded by
rings.These rings were divided into many sections by astronomers and scientists.The D ring is
closest to Saturn ,the F, G ,E rings and the Phoebe ring are the outermost rings .

The final image below is of Saturn and its rings in March 2015 (made with Starry Night and a touch of Photoshop;the lighting is an added effect).

Saturn and rings

The rings of Saturn lie within the Roche limit.Inside this borderline distance (approximately 2.44
Saturn radii ) a celestial body or moon disintegrates due to the stronger tidal forces of Saturn and
rings are formed  , while outside it a body or disk of orbiting material is expected to accrete and
coalesce.

A general formula for calculating the Roche limit is:

The Roche limit

The Roche limit varies for rigid bodies and for fluid satellites.

Additional reference work related to this post and the Roche limit :
Planets, Stars and Stellar Systems , Volume 3:Solar and Stellar Planetary Systems ( edited by Terry D. Oswalt ,
Linda M. French and Paul Kalas).

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s