Hubble discovers dark spot on Uranus

Posted on Sunday, Oct 01 2006 @ 09:07 CEST by Thomas De Maesschalck
The Hubble telescope found a dark spot on Uranus that appears to be 1700 by 3000 kilometers wide.
A mysterious dark spot has appeared in the clouds of Uranus – something that has never before been seen clearly on the icy planet. Scientist do not know what makes it dark and why it is appearing now.

Its more distant neighbour, Neptune, has displayed prominent dark spots from time to time. They also display a puzzling range of behaviours, sometimes moving back and forth in latitude, and sometimes changing shape with time.

They are thought to be related to eddies in the atmosphere, but exactly how the eddies cause dark patches is unclear.

Now, the Hubble Space Telescope, which has frequently scrutinised the planet since 1994, has seen the first such spot on Uranus. Lawrence Sromovsky of the University of Wisconsin, in Madison, US, led the team that found the spot, which appeared in an image taken on 24 August.
Scientists say the the cloud is likely related to eddies in the atmosphere, but exactly how the eddies cause dark patches is unclear.


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Thomas De Maesschalck

Thomas has been messing with computer since early childhood and firmly believes the Internet is the best thing since sliced bread. Enjoys playing with new tech, is fascinated by science, and passionate about financial markets. When not behind a computer, he can be found with running shoes on or lifting heavy weights in the weight room.



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Re: Hubble discovers dark spot on Uranus
by Anonymous on Tuesday, Oct 10 2006 @ 03:53 CEST
This could be a serious problem with Uranus's atmosphere, it must simply be wiped up.
Wait, this isn't the first time I've seen a dark spot on Uranus.