This is an image of Neptune's current Great Dark Spot.
Click on image for full size
NASA/STScI and Dr. Heidi B. Hammel
Neptune's Present Great Dark Spot
This image shows the new Great Dark Spot of Neptune, which was discovered using the Hubble Space Telescope. The image shown here, shows a "hole" in the clouds of Neptune in pink, in the northern hemisphere, in the bottom right corner of the picture. (The north is on the bottom in this image, because telescopes always invert the object that is being viewed). This hole is where the new Great Dark Spot is.
It should be noted that the planet Neptune is very far away. The Voyager image from 1989 of the Great Dark Spot, shows a much clearer picture than the present Hubble images because Voyager was so close to Neptune.
Shop Windows to the Universe Science Store!
Our online store
includes issues of NESTA's quarterly journal, The Earth Scientist
, full of classroom activities on different topics in Earth and space science, ranging from seismology
, rocks and minerals
, and Earth system science
You might also be interested in:
This image shows the new Great Dark Spot of Neptune, which was discovered using the Hubble Space Telescope. The image shown here, shows a "hole" in the clouds of Neptune in pink, in the northern hemisphere,...more
Atmospheres of the giant planets have definitely evolved from their formation out of the primitive solar nebula. How much they have evolved remains to be seen, however. Because of their enormous gravity,...more
This image shows some cirrus clouds, extending for many kilometers across the disc of Neptune. These clouds are somewhat high up, for they can be seen to cast shadows on the lower clouddeck, which is 35...more
This image of Neptune uses false colors to bring out the hazes of smog, which can be seen in red along the limb of Neptune, at the edge of the picture. These hazes of smog are found at very high altitudes,...more
Like Jupiter and all the giant planets, Neptune's appearance shows a striped pattern of clouds. Other cloud shapes seen over time include a small dark spot, the "scooter" and the Great Dark Spot. The Great...more
The solar system contracted, or shrank together, out of a spinning cloud of hydrogen and helium gas. This spinning cloud had a certain amount of momentum, which caused it to flatten, somewhat the way a...more
If you had a quiz question in school that asked what year Neptune was discovered, you'd probably choose 1846. But Neptune wasn't discovered the way all the other planets in our solar system were. Astronomers...more
In astronomy, it is a usual procedure to calculate the luminosity of a star, and this calculation indicates the energy and the temperature of the star. When the luminosity of the outer planets was calculated,...more