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Week 9 Astronomy Notes

by: Raleigh Zook

Week 9 Astronomy Notes ASTR 1210

Marketplace > University of Virginia > Astronomy > ASTR 1210 > Week 9 Astronomy Notes
Raleigh Zook
GPA 3.55

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About this Document

These notes discuss planets and their composition, atmosphere, interiors, etc.
Introduction to the Sky and Solar System
Remy Indebebetouw
Class Notes
astronomy, Science, planet, composition
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This 7 page Class Notes was uploaded by Raleigh Zook on Thursday March 31, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to ASTR 1210 at University of Virginia taught by Remy Indebebetouw in Spring 2016. Since its upload, it has received 16 views. For similar materials see Introduction to the Sky and Solar System in Astronomy at University of Virginia.


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Date Created: 03/31/16
Jovian  Planets     • Composition   o Mainly  hydrogen  and  helium  in  Jupiter  and  Saturn   o Uranus  and  Neptune:  hydrogen  compounds  (water,  methane,   ammonia,  hydrogen,  helium,  and  rock)   § Lower  pressures  =  No  metallic  hydrogen   o Jovian  planets  have  similar  interiors     • There  are  density  differences   o Uranus  and  Neptune’s  density  is  more  than  Saturn  because  they  have   proportionately  less  hydrogen  and  helium                               Picture  from  lecture  presentation       • Sizes   o Jupiter  has  a  greater  compression  rate,  so  that  is  why  it  is  not  much   bigger  than  Saturn  even  though  it  is  three  times  more  massive  (it  is   more  dense)   o More  mass  can  be  smaller  than  Jupiter  if  it  is  a  Jovian  planet,  though   • Not  all  are  spherical   o Due  to  their  fast  rotation  speed   • Layer  structure   o There  is  no  solid  surface   o Cores  are  composed  of  hydrogen  compounds,  rocks,  and  metals—the   layers  are  under  higher  pressure  rates  and  temperatures   o Layers  =  Different  for  each  planet     Jupiter   • Pressure  increases  the  more  inside  you  go,  causes  hydrogen  phase  to  change   in  relation  to  its  depth   o Hydrogen  acting  like  metal  due  to  its  electrons  moving  freely—Jupiter   composed  of  metallic  hydrogen   o In  terms  of  water,  temperature  changes  it  crosses  from  liquid  phase   and  evaporates.  Changing  pressure  also  changes  the  phase—water   boils  at  higher  altitudes   • Hydrogen  requires  even  more  extreme  conditions   • Metallic  hydrogen  is  a  possible  powerful  rocket  fuel   • Same  size  as  earth  (10X  massive,  though)   • Liquid  helium  rain   • Rocky  core  with  rick,  hydrogen  compounds,  etc.   • Internal  Heat   o Radiates  2x  energy  that  it  gets  from  the  Sun—this  energy  is  from  a   slow  contraction  of  its  interior’s  potential  energy  (inside  still   rearranging  itself)   o Differentiation—helium  rain   • Does  not  have  a  large,  metal  core  (The  Earth  does),  so  its  magnetic  field  is   due  to  the  conduction  of  metallic  hydrogen,  which  circulates  and  thus  creates   it.   Internal  Heat  of  other  Jovian  Planets   • Saturn:  Same  as  Jupiter’s   • Neptune:  Same  as  Jupiter,  except  its  source  is  unknown     Jupiter  Compared  to  the  Stars   • Sun   o Sun  is  10x  size  of  Jupiter   o Sun  is  1000x  mass  of  Jupiter   o Density  is  not  as  radically  different  only  7x  more   o Sun’s  temperature  is  500x  of  Jupiter’s   • Stars   o Similar  in  phase  changes,  but  in  a  different  degree   § Methane,  ammonia,  etc.   • Hot  Jupiters   o Very  close  to  their  star  and  there  is  10,000x  more  solar  energy  input   o Take  a  spectrum  as  the  planet  moves  around   • Bands   o White  ammonia  clouds  are  created  where  the  air  rose  and  between   these  white  clouds  there  is  a  deep  red  cloud.  Warmer  red  bands  are   brighter  in  IR  and  the  directions  are  shifted.         Main  Points   • Neptune  and  Uranus  don’t  have  as  high  pressure—more  rock  content  in  the   core   • Jupiter  and  Saturn  have  high  pressure  inside  with  hydrogen  changing  to   liquid,  solid,  and  metallic  H   • Jupiter,  Saturn,  and  Neptune  emitting  more  energy  than  they  get  from  the   Sun  (due  to  internal  forces,  except  for  Neptune)       Atmosphere  and  Weather   • Atmosphere   o Jupiter   § Hydrogen  compounds  make  the  clouds   § Different  cloud  layers  relate  to  the  freezing  points  of  these   differing  hydrogen  compounds   § Colors:  ammonium  sulfide  clouds  are  red  and  brown;   Ammonia  (highest  and  coldest  layer)  is  white   • Different  composition  clouds  have  different  colors  and   form  at  different  altitudes  due  to  pressure   o Other  jovian  planets   § Cloud  layers  relative  to  Jupiter’s   § Different  compounds  à  Different  colors   § Different  depths  is  what  changes  the  colors  since  it  is  the  same   chemistry  processes   o Uranus  and  Neptune   § Methane  clouds  :  Absorb  red  light  and  transmit  blue  (reflects   off  methane  clouds,  which  is  why  they  look  blue)   • Weather   o Jupiter   § Great  Red  Spot   • Storm   o Other  planets   § Strong  winds  and  storms,  as  well,  but  some  are  not  as  dramatic   as  others     Magnetospheres   • Go  near  Jupiter,  send  instruments  there,  and  can  see  solar  wind  can  sweep   over  clouds  by  magnetic  field  and  gets  deflected   • Jupiter  has  a  strong  magnetic  field     o Though  all  planets  have  magnetospheres,  Jupiter’s  is  the  biggest       Moons   • Sizes   o Small   § <300  km  with  no  geological  activity   § A  lot  more;  Not  spherical  because  not  enough  gravityà  Potato-­‐ shaped   § Orbits  aren’t  patterned  because  asteroids  and  comets   o Medium   § 300-­‐1500  km  that  may  have  had  geological  activity  in  the  past   o Large   § 1500  +  that  still  has  geological  activity   o Medium  and  Large   § Self-­‐gravity  to  be  shaped  like  a  sphere   § Ice   § Formed  in  orbit  around  these  Jovian  planets  (Probably  formed   with  their  planet)à  Circular  orbits  in  the  same  direction  as  its   Jovian  planet   Jupiter’s  Galilean  moons   o Tectonics,  volcanic  activity     o Io  (mostly  sulfur  compounds  and  big  volcanoes  seen  in  infrared— most  volcanically  active  body  in  our  solar  system),     § Small  so  it  should  have  cooled  off,  but  has  hot,  active  interior   § Due  to  tidal  heating—closer  to  Jupiter  it  stretches  (tidal   bulges—keep  inside  liquid)   § Elliptical  orbit?  Because  of  orbital  resonances—these  moons   interact  together…they  are  multiples  of  each  other  in   time…every  7  days  they  line  up  in  orbit  (except  Callisto)…over   time  it  stretches  out  their  orbits—synchronicity     o Europa,  Ganymede   o Callisto   o     Shaping  Surfaces   • Impact  cratering   o By  Asteroids  or  comets   o Most  after  solar  system  was  created   o Usually  10x  larger  than  the  object  that  created  them   o More  small  crates  than  larger  ones   o E.g.  Meteor  Crater  in  Arizona  and  Tycho  on  the  moon   • Volcanism   o Eruption  onto  surface  by  molten  rock  (magma)     o Path  from  lithosphere  to  surface   o Kinds  of  volcanoes:     § Runny  and  thin  and  makes  a  pool/puddle—flat  lava  plains   § Thicker  lava—shield  volcanoes   § Thick  and  dries  quickly  to  make  a  steeper,  rougher  volcano— statovolcano     o Outgassing—releases  gas  into  atmosphere   • Tectonics   o Large  chunks  of  surface  moving  around  and  interacting  with  each   other   o Due  to  internal  stresses   o Convection  of  mantle  à  Stresses  within  crust  (Tectonic  forces)   o Compression  stresses  à  Mountain  ranges   o Crust  pulled  apart  à  Valley   • Erosion   o Movement  of  wind,  water,  ice,  etc.     Differences  in  Planets:   Size   • Smaller  planets  cool  off  faster  and  harden  earlier   • Larger  ones’  interiors  are  warm  à  Promote  volcanism  and  tectonics     o More  erosion  due  to  their  gravity  retaining  an  atmosphere   Distance  from  the  Sun   • Too  close  tend  to  have  less  erosion,  because  too  hot  for  rain,  snow,  and  ice   • Hotter  planets  have  difficulty  retaining  an  atmosphere   • Too  far  from  the  sun  à  too  cold  for  rain,  less  erosion   o With  liquid  =  More  erosion   Rotation   • If  you  are  not  rotating  enough,  there  is  less  weather  and  less  erosion     o Weak  magnetic  field  (bc  no  fluid  in  center  to  make  gravity)   • Faster  rotating  is  the  opposite     Moon   • Lunar  Maria   o Smooth  and  dark  lunar  maria  are  not  as  cratered  as  lunar  highlands   o Made  by  runny  lava  flooding   o Early  surface  with  craters  (probably  impact  craters)  à  Weakens  crust   à  Lava  comes  to  surface  due  to  heat  build-­‐up  à  Cooled  lava:   smoother  and  darker   • Tectonic  Features   o Wrinkles  due  to  cooling  and  contraction  of  lava  flood   • Geologically  dead  because  geological  processes  stopped   • Cratering   o Darker  areas  =  earlier  crater   o Some  areas  are  more  cratered   o Younger  regions  were  flooded  after  cratering  by  lava   o Impact  craters  reveal  a  surface’s  geological  age   § Occurred  in  first  billion  years  and  not  changed  much  if  there  is   a  lot   o ~3  million  years  till  footprints  will  be  modestly  eroded     Geological  Processes  of  Mercury   • Mixture,  like  the  Moon,  of  craters  and  smooth  areas  (where  ancient  lava   would  have  flowed)   o Caloris  basin:  Huge  impact  crater  that  was  so  big  that  if  you  go  to  the   opposite  side,  there  is  material  from  seismic  activity   • Tectonics   o Long,  tall  cliffsà  May  have  shrank  earlier  in  time       Mars   • Cratering  indicates  a  greater  degree  of  geological  activity  being  erased   • Volcanism:  Huge,  shield  volcanoes   o Olympus  Mons  is  the  largest  in  the  entire  solar  system   o Less  gravity  =  Higher  buildup  on  material   • Tectonics   o Valleys  formed  by  tectonics   • Water   o Water  once  flowed  through  due  to  geological  evidence   o Dry  riverbeds   o Craters  eroded  that  could  have  once  been  filled  with  water  (or  wind)   o Crater  walls   § Gullies  show  that  liquid  water  flow  could  have  happened  <   1,000,000  years  ago   o Hydrogen  content   § Low-­‐lying  areas  –  More  water  ice   o Martian  rock   § Formed  in  water  (Minerology:  likely  water)   o Briny  water   § Dark  lanes  that  grow  when  it  is  warmer  and  spectral   signatures  of  perchlorate  chemicals  (salt  to  melt  the  water)   Venus   • Radar  Mapping   o Only  sent  something  to  surface  once  or  twice  and  can’t  see  surface  due   to  thick  atmosphere     • Craters   o Impact  craters,  but  not  as  much   • Volcanoes   o Shield  and  stratovolcanoes—not  only  runny,  but  thick  lava,  as  well   • Tectonics   o Some;  Weak  tectonics   o Fractures  and  contorted  surface   o No  plate  tectonics—don't  move  around  much,  but  had  a  big,  dramatic   event,  the  whole  surface  was  repaved”  750,000,000  years  ago   o Less  convection  of  magma—Same  size  as  earth   o Stronger  lithosphere,  so  inside  cannot  move  it   o Surface  is  baked-­‐out—water  lubricates  rock  motion   • Erosion   o Little  erosion  due  to  too  hot  for  rain,  ice,  and  snow   o No  surface  water   o Lack  of  wind   o Not  much  seasons  (not  much  tilt)   o Not  much  weather  (Thick  atmosphere,  so  no  changes  in  temperature;   Rotation  slight  retrograde  motion,  not  driving  weather)     Earth   • Crater   o Not  a  lot  (atmosphere  helps  burn  up  meteorites  as  they  come  in)   o Craters  obliterated  if  reach  earth   • Volcanism   o Fair  amount  on  earth  relative  to  Venus,  Mercury,  Moon,  Mars   • A  lot  of  erosion   • A  lot  of  tectonics   o Required  for  life—allow  us  to  recycle  carbon  from  atmosphere  and   crust  of  earth   o Seafloor  crust   § Thin  (While  continental  crust  is  thick)   § Recycling—subduction     § Young     o Geological  features  due  to  tectonics   § Himalayas  à  Collision  of  plates   § Red  Sea  à  Pulled  apart   § Rifts,  faults,  earthquakes   § San  Andreas  à  Plate  boundary   § Motion  of  plates  =  Earthquakes    


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