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This is a drawing showing another form of motions in a planets interior.
Click on image for full size

Motions in Saturn's Interior, part 2

Motions, or currents in the interior of a gas-giant planet such as Saturn may be very different from the motions typical of the earth's interior.

A second idea for the motions in the interior of a gas-giant planet is shown in this picture. Strong heat coming from within a planet can cause this kind of motion to take place. The drawing shows layered cylinders of material, in motion, rolling in different directions. It is thought that this pattern may be in operation because the tips of the cylinders may correspond to the striped pattern of clouds seen in the atmosphere.

It is not known which of these two kinds of motion, one typical of the earth, and one like this, prevails in the interior of Saturn.


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Windows to the Universe, a project of the National Earth Science Teachers Association, is sponsored in part is sponsored in part through grants from federal agencies (NASA and NOAA), and partnerships with affiliated organizations, including the American Geophysical Union, the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, the Earth System Information Partnership, the American Meteorological Society, the National Center for Science Education, and TERC. The American Geophysical Union and the American Geosciences Institute are Windows to the Universe Founding Partners. NESTA welcomes new Institutional Affiliates in support of our ongoing programs, as well as collaborations on new projects. Contact NESTA for more information. NASA ESIP NCSE HHMI AGU AGI AMS NOAA