Reference Article

from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Gas giant

A gas giant is a large planet that is not primarily composed of rock or other solid matter.

Gas giants may have a rocky or metallic core—in fact, such a core is thought to be required for a gas giant to form—but the majority of its mass is in the form of the gases hydrogen and helium, with traces of water, methane, ammonia, and other hydrogen compounds.

Unlike rocky planets, which have a clearly defined difference between atmosphere and surface, gas giants do not have a well-defined surface; their atmospheres simply become gradually denser toward the core, perhaps with liquid or liquid-like states in between.

One cannot "land on" such planets in the traditional sense.

There are four gas giants in our solar system: Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune.

Note: This article excerpts material from the Wikipedia article "Gas giant", which is released under the GNU Free Documentation License.

See the following related content on ScienceDaily:


Related Videos

last updated on 2014-04-18 at 11:00 pm EDT

NASA 360: Stories of the Solar System: Outer Planets

NASA 360: Stories of the Solar System: Outer Planets

NASA (July 16, 2013) Dr. Jim Garvin: The next wave of discovery and beyond Mars was the outer planets. Lindley Johnson: Pioneer 10 and Pioneer 11 were, you know, the first two spacecraft to actually cross the asteroid belt. Dr. James Green: Our first foray into the outer planets. Dr. Jim Garvin: We were able to go and see these gas giant worlds for the first time by actually being there. What the mission did was not solve all the questions. What it did was, it raised the right ones to ask next.
Powered by NewsLook.com
Endeavour's Homeward Journey

Endeavour's Homeward Journey

Xinhua News Agency (Oct. 14, 2012) On Saturday, the retired space shuttle Endeavour makes its way home. In the suburb area of Los Angeles, the giant space shuttle is greeted with a welcome atmosphere as it inches through the city towards its new home at a local museum. Many residents walked more than a mile to the area where the giant space shuttle was parked.
Powered by NewsLook.com
E-ELT: Looking Into Black Holes

E-ELT: Looking Into Black Holes

Deutsche Welle (July 21, 2013) Known as the E-ELT for short, the European Extremely Large Telescope will be located at the European Southern Observatory, the ESO. At the moment, parts of the spyglass are being assembled in Garching in southern Germany. Jochen Liske of the ESO is involved in the project, which is expected to be ready to operate in the coming decade. Yet astronomers already know the telescope will be used to research black holes. At the moment, an enormous gas cloud is being torn apart by a black hole in the galaxy where the earth is located, the Milky Way. The E-ELT will be used to probe events like this, with the aim of answering key astronomical questions, such as the role of black holes in the development of galaxies.
Powered by NewsLook.com
Astronomers Zoom Into Pencil Nebula, 4800 Trillion Miles Away

Astronomers Zoom Into Pencil Nebula, 4800 Trillion Miles Away

Reuters (Sep. 12, 2012) The European Southern Observatory in northern Chile has released new images of a massive glowing cloud of gas called The Pencil Nebula, 800 lightyears from Earth. The images show pink, white and blue filaments streaking across the sky, the result of a stellar explosion 11,000 years ago.
Powered by NewsLook.com

Related Stories


Share This



Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins