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Facts and Trivia About the Outer Planets

Updated on October 12, 2012
Mars | Source

Mars - The nearest of the outer planets Mars is much smaller than earth with a smaller atmosphere and here are some interesting facts about the red planet.

  • The red planet is red due to the high concentration of iron oxide on the surface
  • Mars has 2 moons.
  • Mars contains the largest volcano in the solar system named Olympus Mons with a peak of 21 kilometers above the martian surface.
  • The first pictures taken of the mars surface were taken by the Viking probes which landed there in 1975.
  • If one were to stand on the surface of Mars and look into the sky the sun would appear half the size as from the earth surface.

Jupiter - The largest planet in the solar system.

  • This planet takes 12 years to travel around the sun.
  • Jupiter has rings much like Saturn but are very difficult to see through normal telescopes.
  • Jupiter has 62 moons, including a couple with atmospheres one Europa has an oxygen atmosphere and possibly a liquid water ocean beneath hundreds on miles of ice. Another moon Lo has a sulfur dioxide atmosphere and is the most volcanic body in the solar system.
  • It would take 1300 earths to make the same volume as one Jupiter.
  • The "great red spot" a never-ending tornado on the surface of Jupiter is large enough to swallow the earth.
  • A 200 pound man on earth would weigh approximately 63,600 pounds on the surface of Jupiter.

Jupiter's Great Red Spot
Jupiter's Great Red Spot | Source
Saturn | Source

Saturn - Large and gaseous with a solid core Saturn is easily identified by its pronounced rings.

  • Saturn has 62 moons including one, Titan, that has an atmosphere more dense than that of Earth. Titan also has lakes, rivers, and rain from liquid methane and ethane.
  • Titan one of the largest moons of Saturn is the only moon (other than our own) that has had a probe, called the Huygens probe, land on it and take pictures of the surface from the surface.
  • Saturn's rings appear solid when viewed through a telescope but are actually made up of primarily water and some dust.

Uranus - This planet was discovered is 1781 by William Herschel it was the first planet discovered after the ancient and middle ages.

  • Uranus has 27 moons.
  • It has been discovered that like the planet Saturn has rings around it but unlike Saturn the rings are very difficult to see with conventional telescopes.
  • Uranus spins as though laying on it's side from top to bottom.

Uranus | Source
Pluto | Source

Neptune - The second last planet in or solar system (or last planet if you are going by the new idea that Pluto is no longer a planet.)

  • Neptune has 13 moons including one, Triton, that has an atmosphere.
  • This planet was discovered only because of distortions in the orbit of Uranus as it revolved around the sun.

Pluto - This body was considered a planet until more recently when it was downgraded to a dwarf planet.

  • When Pluto was considered a planet, the final planet in our solar system it sometimes relinquished that title to Neptune due to it's unusual orbit at some points being closer to the sun than Neptune.
  • Earth's moon is larger than Pluto.


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    • terrektwo profile image

      Candle Hour 5 years ago from North America

      Lipnancy - true it could at that, I really enjoy reading about the planets too and their moons, thanks for reading my article :)

    • terrektwo profile image

      Candle Hour 5 years ago from North America

      teaches12345 - I really love reading about the planets, their moons and especially these days exo-planets :)

    • Lipnancy profile image

      Nancy Yager 5 years ago from Hamburg, New York

      I find this topic very interesting. Understanding the workings of other planets may help us to better understand ours.

    • teaches12345 profile image

      Dianna Mendez 5 years ago

      Very interesting article on the outer planets, especially Jupiter. Your photos add to the interest and help in relating the different points. I have always enjoyed learning about outer space, good read here.