10 Things You Probably Didn’t Know About Neptune

Neptune, in general, wasn't visible through the naked eye back in ancient times. Moreover, it was originally discovered in the 1800s, and its exact position was determined with the help of mathematical predictions.

Neptune is known as the most distant planet in our solar system. Experts believe that it may have initially formed near to the sun. However, it moved pretty far over time. Furthermore, it is named after a Roman sea god as it appears blue in colour.

The Great Dark Spot.
The Great Dark Spot. Source: Voyager 2

Following are ten interesting facts about Neptune. Let’s have a look at them, shall we? 

1) The people of the olden days had no idea about Neptune:

Since it was quite far, the people of the olden days had no idea about its existence. Neptune, in general, wasn’t visible through the naked eye back in ancient times. Moreover, it was originally discovered in the 1800s, and its exact position was determined with the help of mathematical predictions. Since it’s blue in colour, it was named after the Roman god of the sea.

2) Neptune pivots on its axis very quickly:

Neptune’s equatorial clouds take approximately 16 hours to make one full rotation mainly because it  isn’t a solid body.

3) Neptune is known as the smallest gas giant of our solar system:

Planet Neptune is considered as the smallest gas giant of our solar system. Moreover, it has a greater mass as compared to other gas giants. Neptune is made up of several layers of hydrogen, helium, and methane. Also, the inner core or the centre of the planet is made up of solid rock.

4) Planet Neptune appears blue in colour:

As stated above, the atmosphere of the planet is made up of hydrogen, helium, and methane. Hence, methane, in general, absorbs red light and makes the planet appear blue. Moreover, the upper atmosphere of the planet is made up of high, thin clouds.

5) Planet Neptune has an active climate:

As per various observations, massive storms form within the upper atmosphere of Neptune. Moreover, Neptune’s brutal winds move across the planet at approximately 600 meters per second. One of the biggest storms of Neptune was recorded in 1989. The said storm is called the Great Dark Spot; it remained on the planet for approximately five years.

6) Planet Neptune has a collection of thin rings:

The rings of Neptune are quite thin. Also, they are made up of ice and dust particles. The rings are also coated with a carbon-based substance.

7) Planet Neptune has over 14 moons:

Yes, planet Neptune has over 14 moons. The most interesting of the lot is known as Triton. It is a frozen planet that blows nitrogen ice and dust particles from its surface. The said moon fell into its current position due to the gravitational pull of Neptune. Experts claim that it is the coldest planet in the solar system.

8) NASA’s Voyager 2 has flown by Neptune:

NASA’s Voyager 2 visited Neptune in around 1989. Moreover, it sent the images of Neptune’s surface to the NASA headquarters. The NASA and ESA Hubble Space Telescope also managed to study this planet in the past.

9) Planet Neptune’s Great Dark spot:

The Great Dark Spot of Neptune was originally discovered in 1989 by the Voyager 2 spacecraft. Experts claim that it was a massive rotating storm system with winds of up to 1,500 miles per hour; the most powerful winds recorded on any planet. The Dark Spot eventually vanished from the planet.

10) Neptune has icy clouds:

Neptune’s atmosphere contains icy clouds and the fastest winds recorded in the solar system. Particles of icy methane and various gases give Neptune its deep blue colour. 

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