Neptune facts

Facts about Neptune

Neptune is the eighth planet from the Sun and the last known planet. Although it is the third largest planet in terms of mass, it is only the fourth largest. Due to the blue coloring, Neptun was named in honor of the Roman god of the sea. Read more about Neptune facts.




The orbit achieved by the Sun lasts 164.8 years of the Earth. On July 11, 2011, Neptune completed its first full orbit since its discovery in 1846.

Neptune was discovered by Jean Joseph Le Verrier. The planet was not known to ancient civilizations because it is not visible to the naked eye. The planet was initially named Le Verrier after its discoverer. However, this name was quickly abandoned and the name Neptune was chosen instead.

Neptune is the Roman god of the sea. In Greek, Neptune is called Poseidon.
Neptune has the second highest gravity of every planet in the Solar System – only Jupiter is second only to it.
The orbital path of Neptune is about 30 astronomical units (AU) from the Sun. This means that it is about 30 times larger than the distance from Earth to the Sun.


The largest moon of Neptune, Triton, was discovered only 17 days after the discovery of Neptune itself.

Neptune has a storm similar to the Great Red Spot on Jupiter. It is commonly known as the Great Dark Spot and is more or less the size of the Earth.

Neptune also has a second storm called Small Dark Spot. This storm is similar in magnitude to the Earth’s moon.
Neptune rotates very fast on its axis. Equatorial clouds of the planet take 18 hours to perform one revolution. The reason for this is that Neptune facts do not have a solid body.

Only one spacecraft, Voyager 2, flew past Neptune. It happened in 1989 and captured the first rapprochements in the Neptune system. It took 246 minutes – four hours and six minutes – to get signals from Voyager 2 back to Earth.

The climate of Neptune facts is extremely active. In the upper layers of the atmosphere, powerful storms break through, and fast solar winds follow the planet at speeds of up to 1,340 km per second. The biggest storm was the Great Blind Spot in 1989, which lasted about five years.

Like other outer planets, Neptune has a ring system, although its rings are very weak. Most likely they consist of ice particles and dust grains, covering them with a carbonaceous substance.

Neptune has 14 known moons. The largest of these moons is Titan – a frozen world that releases particles of ice and nitrogen dust from its surface. It is believed that Titan has been caught by the huge gravitational pull of Neptune facts and is considered one of the coldest worlds in our solar system. Neptune has an average surface temperature of -214 ° C – around -353 ° F.

Neptune facts
Neptune facts


When scientific discoveries are made, there is often a debate (sometimes hot) that deserves recognition. The discovery of Neptune facts is one such example. Shortly after the discovery of the planet Uran in 1781, scientists noticed that its orbit had significant fluctuations that were not expected. To solve this mystery, they proposed the existence of another planet, whose gravitational field would be responsible for such orbital variances.



In 1845, the English astronomer John Couch Adams completed the calculation of the location of this unknown planet. Although he presented his findings to the Royal Society (the leading English scientific organization), his work met with little interest. However, a year later, the French astronomer Jean Joseph Le Verrier presented his calculations strikingly similar to the calculations of Adams. On September 23, 1846, German astronomer Johann Gall observed a new planet near the place where Adam’s calculations predicted and even closer to Le Verrier’s calculations.



Initially, Le Verrier was considered a discovery. As a result, an international dispute arose, with one faction defeating Adams and Le Verrier. However, this conflict was not divided between the two men. Eventually, the campaign on both sides cooled and both men received a loan.


Until the Voyager 2 flight in 1989, little was known about Neptune facts. This mission has provided new information on Neptune rings, the number of moons, atmosphere, and rotation. In addition, Voyager 2 discovered the essential features of the moon Triton. 



Atmosphere Neptune facts

Neptune’s upper atmosphere consists of 80% hydrogen (H2), 19% helium and trace amounts of methane. Unlike Uranus, Neptune is deeper than the blue one, which is why in Neptune’s atmospheres, which are not present in the Uranian atmosphere, there must be another atmospheric component.


The first seen during the Voyager 2 mission is Dark Spots. These are storms comparable to the Great Red Spot found on Jupiter. The difference between these storms, however, lies in their duration. 


The second of the two weather patterns observed by Voyager 2 is a fast-moving white storm system, called the Scooter. This type of storm system, which is much smaller than the Dark Spots, also seems short-lived. As with other gas giants, Neptune’s atmosphere is divided into latitudinal bands. The wind speed achieved in some of these bands is almost 600 m / s, the fastest known in the solar system.


Interior Neptune facts

The interior of Neptune facts, similar to Uranus, consists of two layers: the core and the mantle. The core is rocky and is estimated to be 1.2 times larger than Earth. The coat is an extremely hot and dense liquid consisting of water, ammonia, and methane. The coat has ten to fifteen masses of Earth.


Although Neptune and Uranus have similar interiors, they are quite clear in one way. While Uranus emits only the same amount of heat it receives from the Sun, Neptune emits almost 2.61 times the amount of sunlight it receives. To put it, the surface temperature of both planets is approximately equal, but Neptune receives only 40% of the sunlight that Uranus does. In addition, this large internal heat is also what drives extreme winds in the upper atmosphere.


Orbit and Rotation Neptune facts 

With the discovery of Neptune facts, the size of the known Solar System has doubled. At an average orbital distance of 4.50 x 109 km, sunlight reaches Neptune for almost four hours and forty minutes. What’s more, this distance also means that the Neptune year lasts about 165 Earth years!


The eccentricity of the Neptune orbit at 0.0097 is the second smallest from Venus. This small eccentricity means that Neptune’s orbit is very close to roundness. Another way of looking at this is to compare the Neptune perihelion by 4.46 x 109 km and its aphelion 4.54 x 109 km and note that this difference is less than two percent.


Like Jupiter and Saturn, Neptune rotates very fast compared to Earth’s planets. With a rotating period of just over 16 hours, Neptune has the third shortest day in the solar system.

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