100 Interesting Facts About Planets and their Moons

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76Greater Green River Intergalactic Spaceport

Greater Green River Intergalactic Spaceport

In 1994, a hardly used public airstrip in Wyoming was designated by the city council as Greater Green River Intergalactic Spaceport for possible refugees from Jupiter

77. Scientists believe there is the 9th planet in our solar system that is roughly 10 times larger than earth. They haven't been able to locate it yet but they know it's there because of its gravitational effects on other objects.

78. Io, Jupiter's nearest orbiting "Galilean" moon is the most geologically active object in the Solar System.

79. Jupiter's moon Europa has more water than Earth’s surface oceans. Its subsurface ocean plus ice layer could range from 80 to 170 kilometers in average depth.

80. Every time Io passes into Jupiter's shadow, Io's atmosphere freezes solid and smashes into the surface. When Io moves back into the sunlight, the frozen atmosphere thaws and returns to a gas.

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81Mimas moon

Mimas moon

Saturn has a moon called Mimas and it has a crater in it that makes it look like the Death Star

82. Other planets such as Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune have auroras with different colors.

83. When our solar system was forming, Jupiter gained enough mass that its self-gravity became strong enough to pull in a lot of interstellar gas, but not enough to start fusion. If this had happened our solar system would have been a binary star system (two suns) and for this reason, Jupiter is sometimes referred to as a “failed star.”

84. The Galileo space probe was intentionally crashed into Jupiter at the end of its operational life to avoid contaminating Jupiter's moons with bacteria.

85. UY Scuti is one of the leading candidates for being the largest known star by radius and is also one of the most luminous of its kind. It has volume 5 billion times that of the Sun. If placed at the center of our Solar System, it would engulf the orbit of Jupiter, although the radius is not known for certain and may be larger than the orbit of Saturn.

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86Jesuit Order

Jesuit Order

The Jesuit Order is credited as the single most important contributor to experimental physics in the 17th and 18th Centuries, with significant contributions to the study of magnetism, optics, and electricity; observed the colored bands of Jupiter, the Andromeda nebula, and Saturn’s rings.

87. In 2009, a new black spot about the size of the Pacific Ocean appeared in Jupiter’s southern hemisphere.

88. It might rain liquid neon on Jupiter

89. In 2011, a 14-year-old amateur astronomer named Laurent V. Joli-Coeur from Canada proved that Jupiter is bright enough to cast shadows on Earth.

90. An exoplanet known as J1407 is a planet with a ring system so huge that it is 200x larger than Saturn’s. If it took the place of Saturn in our solar system, its rings would be brighter and more prominent than the moon in the Earth’s sky.

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Because Jupiter is so heavy and far away, that the Sun also orbits Jupiter. And Jupiter orbits a point outside of the sun itself. This is called the 'Barycenter'.

92. When the spacecraft Cassini sent a probe to Saturn's moon Titan, the European Space Agency forgot to turn on a receiver and thus missed half of the images.

93. Uranus is the coldest planet in our solar system, even though Neptune is farther from the sun.

94. "Triton", Neptune's largest moon, has geysers that shoot ice 5 miles high and may be geologically active.

95. Triton will one day be destroyed by the gravitational forces of Neptune and the resulting debris will give Neptune a ring system similar to Saturn.

96Voyager missions

Voyager missions

The Voyager missions were timed to take advantage of a unique planetary arrangement that allowed flight time to Neptune to be reduced from 30 years to 12. This alignment occurs once every 175 years.

97. There exists a dwarf planet, Haumea, past the orbit of Neptune that is the fastest spinning planet or dwarf planet in our Solar System by far. Haumea is a third of the mass of Pluto but spins once every 3.5 hours on its axis. This speed puts a lot of stress on the dwarf planet and makes it look like an ellipsoid. It is spinning so fast that Haumea is twice as long as it is wide (like a lentil).

98. The surface gravities of Venus, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune are all quite similar (within 15%) to Earth's. Thus, the majority of planets in our solar system actually have Earth-like surface gravity.

99. Neptune has only completed one orbit of the Sun since its discovery in 1846.

100. Zambia had a space program in the 1960s and planned to use a giant catapult to send astronauts to the moon and mars


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