A Few Fun Facts About Neptune
Neptune, which is the eighth planet in the Solar System is found between Uranus and Pluto and occasionally, it’s known as the Blue Giant. Its diameter is near 49,500 km in diameter, and so it’s nearly four times the size of the Earth. The distance between Neptune and the Earth is nearly 4. 4 billion kilometers, and thus, you cannot see it with your naked eyes. You can’t see the planet well even if you use the binoculars. Below we will discuss a few of the interesting facts about Neptune.
Neptune was observed by the astronomers from ancient times including Galileo. However, Galileo did not know that he was seeing a planet. In early times, we didn’t have telescopes that were sufficiently powerful to assist the astronomers and researchers identify planets. Hence, when they found Neptune, the astronomers didn’t observe the disk shape of the planet.
Mathematical calculations were used by the astronomers and researchers to find this planet. In 1843, a mathematician and astronomer in Britain was crucial in calculating the exact location of Neptune. According to the calculations, the astronomer estimated that Neptune was at least one billion miles further away from the Sun as compared to Uranus. Another French astronomer did the calculations and got similar results to the British astronomer. Utilizing the calculations created by the French Astronomer, Johann C. Galle discovered Neptune at September 23, 1846. This discovery was also attributed to the French and British astronomers as their calculations were instrumental its discovery.
Neptune got its name after the Roman god of the sea because of its blue appearance. Its naming is similar to the rest of the planets of the solar system that are named after Roman gods.
This planet consists of iron, iron and other silicates. The Mantle of Neptune chiefly includes methane, ammonia, water and other chemical substances. Neptune’s mantle is very hot with temperatures which vary from 3000 to 5000K. The atmosphere is made up of eighty percent hydrogen, 19% of helium and 1 percent of methane, water, and ammonia.
The blue color which characterizes this planet is due to the presence of methane in its atmosphere. It absorbs the red light which comes from the sun and then reflects it in the color blue in space.
Thirteen moons that revolve around Neptune till now have been discovered by astronomers and researchers. It is possible that there are more moons which are yet to be discovered.
The Voyager 2 was the first spaceship to reach Neptune, and it did so in 1989. It took photos of the planet and using these images, researchers discovered that the planet has five rings. These rings are; Adams, Galle, LeVerrier, Lassel, and Arago. People believe that these rings formed a single planet when one of the moons of Neptune got very close and broke into millions of particles due to the gravity in Neptune.