This is a drawing of the interior of Uranus.
Click on image for full size
The Structure of Uranus' Interior
There is no surface to the giant planets, only a gradual change from the atmosphere, as shown in this drawing. Therefore the giant planets do not have strict layers, as the earth-like planets do.
Ice begins forming in the atmosphere of Uranus and keeps increasing until there is slush, and then solid ice. There is not much difference between the atmosphere and the ocean on Uranus, unlike the earth, where there is a definite surface between the air and the ocean.
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:
The Giant planets do not have the same layered structure that the earthlike planets do. Their evolution was quite different than that of the earthlike planets, and they have much more gas and ice inside....more
The picture shows places on Jupiter which are hot. Jupiter is a very warm body in space, as shown in the picture, and this warmth is associated with the energy of Jupiter. When the energy of the outer...more
Motions in the interior of a gas-giant planet such as Uranus may be very different from the motions within the Earth. A second idea for the motions in the interior of a gas-giant planet is shown in this...more
Motions in the interior of a planet help carry heat from the inside to the outside. The drawing to the left illustrates the kind of movements that happen in interior of a planet. Material rises from the...more
The giant planets have definitely changed since their formation. But how much remains to be seen. Most of the original air of the giant planets remains in place. (The earth-like planets lost most of their...more
Uranus' atmosphere is made of methane, a medium sized molecule. At the uppermost reaches of the atmosphere, methane gas breaks apart due to energy from the sun and from the magnetosphere. The remins of...more
Motions of air in the atmosphere include wind. The major winds in the Uranian atmosphere are zonal winds, which have zones blowing west and belts flowing east. Motion of air in the atmosphere can also...more
This is the temperature profile of Uranus' entire atmosphere. The horizontal lines indicate the boundaries between the troposphere, the stratosphere, the mesosphere, and the thermosphere. ...more