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Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune and Pluto [Questions 1-8]

1. Which is the largest of the planets?

Jupiter is the largest of the planets. Its equatorial diameter is 140,000 kilometres. It is more than 10 times the equatorial diameter of the Earth. Jupiter's surface area is 120 times that of the Earth and its volume is 1,300 times the Earth's volume. The mass of Jupiter is larger than the masses of all the other planets put together. It is 300 times the mass of the Earth and 1/1,000 the mass of the Sun.

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2. How far is Jupiter from the Sun?

Jupiter's mean distance from the Sun is 778,000,000 kilometres.

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3. How fast does Jupiter travel around the Sun?

Jupiter makes 13.1 kilometres per second.

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4. How long does it take Jupiter to go once around the Sun?

Nearly 12 of our years.

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5. How long is a day on Jupiter?

Jupiter's day is the shortest of any of the planets' days. Jupiter rotates upon its axis in 9 hours and 50 minutes. The surface of the planet that we see is covered with dense clouds and these do not rotate, as a solid surface would. For that reason the rotation of Jupiter appears to be faster at its equator than near its poles.

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6. How cold is Jupiter?

The temperature of Jupiter is about ---65,5C. This low temperature is the reason that some astronomers thought that a deep layer of frozen methane and ammonia is below the atmosphere.

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7. Does Jupiter have any satellites?

Jupiter has very many satellites, more than any of the other planets. Several of them were discovered not long ago. In 2001 there were 39 satellites known to us. Four of them are very bright. It is very easy to see them. They were discovered by Galilei in 1610. Three of these four are larger than the Moon. Two of them, Ganymede and Callisto, are each larger than Mercury. They move very fast around Jupiter. The four bright satellites have names: Io, Europe, Ganymede and Callisto.

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8. What are Jupiter's satellites made of?

Photographs made by space probes show that Jupiter's satellites are very different. Erupting volcanoes have been found on Io. And Europe seems to be the most probable place where life might appear. Photographs show that Jupiter has a ring - just like Saturn.

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Io, Europe, Ganymede
See also
• The Sun
• The Earth
• The Moon
• Mercury, Venus and Mars
• Meteors and Comets
• Stars
• The Constellations
• Galaxies
• Scientists and Astronomers
 
 
 

 
 
Related Internet Links
• Pluto: Surface
• Jupiter Viewer
• NASA: Uranus
• Saturn Viewer
   
  
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