Thursday, May 28, 2020

NEPTUNE -- The Blue Planet

You will need a strong telescope to see Planet Neptune, stargazers! Although, a mere tiny, blue speck is likely the most you will be able to make of it. That's because the blue planet is so far from Earth. 

The attached 2019 Nat'l Geographic video  has interesting facts and great clips about Neptune. A real must see! ¹Highlights: • The planet has winds so turbulent, they break the sound barrier. • It has a 165 year orbit around the sun, • and 40 Earth years per season. • Neptune is cold, dark, and icy.  • 6 rings encircle the planet and some have ring arcs. • There are 14 known Neptune moons.

²**"Neptune** is
• the eighth and farthest known planet from the Sun in the Solar System.
• In the Solar System, it is the fourth-largest planet by diameter,
• the third-most-massive planet,
• and the densest giant planet.
• Neptune is 17 times the mass of Earth, slightly more massive than its near-twin Uranus.
Orbital period: 165 years  
Distance from Sun: 2.793 billion mi  
Length of day: 0d 16h 6m  
Radius: 15,299 mi
Moons: [Triton][], [Hippocamp][], [Proteus][], [Sao][], [Thalassa][], [Nereid][], [Galatea][], [Despina][], [Larissa][], [More][] ²

³"Colors: The color of Neptune is a bright azure blue. During its flyby in 1989, NASA's Voyager 2 revealed the bright blue color, different from the pale blue color of Uranus."

⁴ "September 11 - Neptune at Opposition. The blue giant planet will be at its closest approach to Earth and its face will be fully illuminated by the Sun. It will be brighter than any other time of the year and will be visible all night long. This is the best time to view and photograph Neptune. Due to its extreme distance from Earth, it will only appear as a tiny blue dot in all but the most powerful telescopes." ⁴


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