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Full Version: Hubble Discovers Dark Cloud in the Atmosphere of Uranus
Unmanned Spaceflight.com > Outer Solar System > Uranus and Neptune
Jyril
STScI Press Release:



QUOTE
Just as we near the end of the hurricane season in the Atlantic Ocean, winds whirl and clouds churn 2 billion miles away in the atmosphere of Uranus, forming a dark vortex large enough to engulf two-thirds of the United States. Astronomers at the University of Wisconsin-Madison used NASA's Hubble Space Telescope to take the first definitive images of a dark spot on Uranus. The elongated feature measures 1,100 miles by 1,900 miles (1,700 kilometers by 3,000 kilometers). This three-wavelength composite image was taken with Hubble's Advanced Camera for Surveys on August 23, 2006. The research team found the dark spot again on August 24. The inset image shows a magnified view of the spot with enhanced contrast. Uranus's north pole is near the 3 o'clock position in this image. The bright band in the southern hemisphere is at 45 degrees south.
paxdan
....must.....resist.....temptation.....
Jyril
Please... Uranus jokes are so banal.
paxdan
QUOTE (Jyril @ Sep 28 2006, 10:02 PM) *
Please... Uranus jokes are so banal.

We don't want this to turn into a farce.
Phil Stooke
I couldn't agree more.

If you make crude jokes about "The Planet That Dare Not Speak Its Name", you're an ass!

Phil
hendric
Hey, since Pluto isn't a planet anymore, let's rename Uranus Pluto! smile.gif
dvandorn
Hey -- you ain't renaming MY...

Oh, uh, sorry. Misunderstood... smile.gif

-the other Doug
lyford
Futurama, anyone? smile.gif
tedstryk
QUOTE (paxdan @ Sep 28 2006, 09:14 PM) *
We don't want this to turn into a farce.


I agree this is not a place for farts...I mean a farce...
lyford
Boy, Doug leaves for Valencia for a few days... biggrin.gif
John Flushing
QUOTE (Jyril @ September 28th, 2006, 04:02 PM) *
Please... Uranus jokes are so banal.

Uranus's discoverer named it "George's Star" kind of like what Mike Brown did with the planet ice dwarf Xena.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Uranus#Discovery_and_naming
JRehling
QUOTE (John Flushing @ Nov 12 2006, 11:27 AM) *
Uranus's discoverer named it "George's Star" kind of like what Mike Brown did with the planet ice dwarf Xena.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Uranus#Discovery_and_naming


Is "John Flushing" a pseudonym adopted just for this thread?
John Flushing
No, it is actually a pseuduonym adopted for a whole host of things.
karolp
What's in a name? Uranus would remain as unexplored by any other name... Or would it? Also, there is one major reason to go there: Ariel. In a book called "Moons of the Outer Planets" that I read in the early 1990s it was speculated that it could still be active today. It was also speculated that Enceladus might - and it actually IS. Ariel is the Enceladus of the Uranian system.
mgrodzki
that is interesting… nobody has anything to add to that? i was thinking that recently as well. while we are running out of candidates, i think moons close to their host gas-giants all have the likelyhood that they might experience some io-europa-enceladus type activity. how much of miranda is rock vs ice? i would imagine if it were mostly rock it would seem less likely to have such activity.
Marz
QUOTE (mgrodzki @ Mar 11 2007, 09:35 PM) *
that is interesting… nobody has anything to add to that? i was thinking that recently as well. while we are running out of candidates, i think moons close to their host gas-giants all have the likelyhood that they might experience some io-europa-enceladus type activity. how much of miranda is rock vs ice? i would imagine if it were mostly rock it would seem less likely to have such activity.


Ariel is an excellent candidate; an icy moon with little ancient cratering left on its surface, and those that are show signs of distortion. I wonder what tidal forces Ariel experiences compared to Enceladus?

Miranda seems unlikely, mostly because it's half the size of Enceladus, and perhaps more importantly, was smashed up and lost much internal organization.

Triton seems like a much more interesting target; much larger, more dense, greater surface variation, and almost certainly geologically active.
tedstryk
QUOTE (Marz @ Mar 15 2007, 04:22 PM) *
Ariel is an excellent candidate; an icy moon with little ancient cratering left on its surface, and those that are show signs of distortion. I wonder what tidal forces Ariel experiences compared to Enceladus?

Miranda seems unlikely, mostly because it's half the size of Enceladus, and perhaps more importantly, was smashed up and lost much internal organization.

Triton seems like a much more interesting target; much larger, more dense, greater surface variation, and almost certainly geologically active.


Actually, Miranda has an equatorial radius of 235 km, while Enceladus has an equatorial radius of 250 km. For comparison, lumpy old Proteus has a mean radius of 315 km! The solar system is indeed a strange place.

Also, as far as activity, Triton is already known to have plumes. Click here for a movie on Calvin Hamilton's site (Which I believe was made by the Voyager team).

Jyril
QUOTE (karolp @ Nov 16 2006, 07:28 PM) *
What's in a name? Uranus would remain as unexplored by any other name... Or would it? Also, there is one major reason to go there: Ariel. In a book called "Moons of the Outer Planets" that I read in the early 1990s it was speculated that it could still be active today. It was also speculated that Enceladus might - and it actually IS. Ariel is the Enceladus of the Uranian system.


Not Miranda which--as already mentioned--is about the same size and even has broadly speaking similar features? Ariel is Uranus' Dione, they're almost exactly the same size. Enceladus is denser than Miranda, and given that Voyager 2's flyby was so close, the value is accurate (as opposed to pre-Cassini Enceladus density value, which was crap)? Titania is bigger version of Ariel/Dione, so it also might be interesting. There's so much to know in the Uranus system that it is sad that the system has got so little attention.
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