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50 Cards in this Set

  • Front
  • Back

As you move to the middle of a Jovian Planet temperature and pressure ________ making things ______.

Increases; liquid

Large Moon Characteristics

Enough self-gravity to be spherical

Have substantial amounts of ice

Formed in orbit around jovian planets

mostly circular orbits in same diffraction as planet rotation

Synchronous rotation

Ongoing geological activity

Why does Io have volcanic activity?

Jupiter is heating it up

Characteristics of irregular moons

Objects that formed apart from a planet but were later gravitationally captured by one

On backward (retrograde) orbits

Many are only a few kilometers across

Triton (moon of neptune) is largest

Geologically active moons

Io, Europa, Ganymede, Callisto

-Io is the most volcanically active body (which continually change its surface)

-Europa has warm water(tidal heating) then ice on top

-Ganymede tidal heating plus heat from radioactive decay

-Callisto is a cratered iceball, no tidal heating

How many Jovian planets have rings?

ALL Jovian planet have rings

Why does Titan have an atmosphere?

It had nobel gases that would say the atmosphere was primordial and came in with comets
So thick because mostly Nitrogen

Its greater mass and distance from the sun have allowed it to retain an atmosphere with a surface pressure 1.5 times the pressure of earth

Characteristics of Dwarf Planet

Small (Pluto is 1/400 the mass of earth)

Eccentric orbit

Rock and Ice

Characteristics of planetary rings

composed of a large number of individual particles that orbit their planet in accord with Kepler's third law, nearer to their planet than any other of the planet's large moons, and are known to exist for all of the jovian planets, orbiting in the equatorial plane of their planet.

Comets have two different tails, what are they differences?

Plasma tail: gas escaping from coma, pushed by solar wind (Coma is atmosphere that comes from heated nucleus)

Dust tail: is pushed by photons

Long Period Comets

Long period of almost 1000 to 1 million years

Retrograde orbits

Large tilts from ecliptic, very elongated orbit

Nucleus not "worn out"

Where do Meteorites come from and what do they tell us

They are bits of solar nebula and early planet formation, and can therefore give us insight into solar nebula processes. They can give us a sense of how planets formed.

When and why do Meteor showers happen?

Happen once per year. when earth goes through left over comet debry

Where did life first form

The ocean

How old are most meteorites? What if younger?

4 billion years old; if younger they must come from reprocessed surface like mars

Where does life exist?

We look everywhere life exists *ALL THE ABOVE

Most efficient way to look for life

Radio signals

Suppose we find life around Jupiter or Saturn; what does it mean for finding life somewhere else?


Jovian Cloudtops

These cloud tops are the surface because its all we can see

Why do we see different colors of clouds?

Because there made of different chemicals

How is the atmosphere of Saturn and Earth similar?

Similar gravity (similar magnetic field strength)

Uranus and Neptune are blue and green because...

The methane gas in the atmosphere

Metallic hydrogen

NOT HARD LIKE METAL; its because the electrons can conduct electricity

Why is Jupiter radiating?

Because its still contracting

Scientific Method

-If continual testing of a hypothesis shows it to be valid it may become an accepted theory

-Hypothesis must always have one or more testable predictions

-Scientific theory may eventually be proven wrong when scientist acquire new date

-NOT an undisputed fact

Universal address small to large

Earth, solar system, milky way, local group, Virgo Super Cluster, the universe

NCP altitude vs latitude

If Polaris has an altitude of 45 degrees, then we know our latitude is 45 degrees north.

Earths rotation as it appears in the stars....

always rotates around the celestial pole

Galileo's discoveries

Phases of Venus


Moons orbiting Jupiter

NOT stellar parallex

Ideas of Greek Philosophers

Earth is a sphere

Heavenly objects move on perfect circles

Earth is at the center of the universe

NOT stellar parallax has been measured

Keplers Laws

-A line connecting the planet and the sun sweeps out equal areas in equal time

-The square of a planets period is equal to the cube of its semi major axis

- Planetary orbits are ellipses wit the sun at one focus

-NOT the force of gravity is inversely proportional to the square of the distance

Newton's Laws

-An object in motion will stay in motion unless acted only an external force

-The force on an object is equal to its mass multiplied by its acceleration

-For every force there is an equal and opposite force

Gravity is an inverse square law

If the distance from earth to the sun was cut in third the gravitational force between the two would be 9 (square the distance)

Kirchoff's laws

-A hot,dense medium will produce a continuous spectrum

-A cooler cloud in front of a hot, dense medium will produce an absorption spectrum

A warm diffuse cloud will produce an emission line spectrum

Wavelength vs frequency vs energy of light

As wavelength increases the energy decreases and its frequency decreases

Properties of blackbodies

Becomes hotter then it also becomes more luminous and bluer

Why do outer planets have H and He and inner terrestrial planets do not?

The outer planets grew massive quickly enough to gravitationally hold on to these gases before solar wind dispersed the accretion disk

What determines gaseous vs terrestrial

The planets distance from the sun

What determines crater count

Geological activity; Mars, Venus, and Earth were active longer than Mercury and the Moon. Meaning Mars, Venus, and Earth have less

When astronomers began searching for extrasolar planets, they were surprised to discover jupiter sized planets much closer than 1 AU from their parent star. Why was this surprising?

The planets must have formed at larger radii where temperature were cooler and then migrated inward

Geology on Earth is drive by tectonic actions...

-the earths crust is broke up into 14 separate continental plates

-Volcanoes occur more often where two plates are coming together rather than spreading apart

-Earthquakes happen where two plates suddenly move relative to each other


Geological features of terrestrials #1

-65 million years ago a 10 km wide asteroid struck earth and likely wiped out more than 50% of living species

-The moon probably was formed by a collision between a mars sized body and the earth

-The surface of Venus is relatively young with an estimated age of less than 1 billion years

-Mercury has many fractures and faults on its surface that probably arouse when it cooled very rapidly and shrank.

Geological features of terrestrials #2

-Geological features and chemical compositions of some rocks on mars suggest liquid water flowed on thee surface in the past, but not in the present

-Darker regions of the moons surface have less craters and are approximately one billion years younger than the lighter regions

-volcanos on mars are larger on average than volcanos on earth partially because mars does not have moving continental plates

-Impact craters on the earth are erased over time because erosion due to water and recycling of its crust

What happens when Earths Radioactivity ends?

Earths core will solidify

Continental drift will cease

Earthquakes will cease

Strength of earths magnetic field will decrease

Products of volcanic outgassing

Co2 and water vapor in a planets atmosphere is direct evidence of volcanic activity

Layers of earths atmosphere low to high

troposphere, tropopause, stratosphere, mesosphere, thermosphere, exosphere

Difference between Co2 content on Earths and Venus

Earths carbon dioxide is now bound up in rock while Venus' remain in the atmosphere

Greenhouse effect

Co2 is highly effective greenhouse gas, because it easily absorbs infrared radiation

Survivability on Mars

People cannot survive long on the surface of mars- not enough oxygen, range of temp between day and night is too large, the flux of UV radiation reaching the surface is too high, and atmospheric pressure would be too low.

Reasons for Bands and Storms

We see bands because of convection and coriolis effect