NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope Captures Detailed Image of Uranus


After capturing the clearest view of Neptune in decades, NASA‘s James Webb Space Telescope has now taken new images of the other ice giant in our solar system, Uranus. Thanks to the observatory’s unprecedented sensitivity, we are able to see the faintest of the planet’s surrounding rings and features of its atmosphere.

Pictured above is Uranus’ northern pole which is currently experiencing late spring. While previous pass-by images showed a featureless orb, the latest images provide more detail to the dynamic atmosphere of Uranus. The brighter sides at the right of the planet is known as a polar cap, which seems to appear in the summer and vanish in the fall. Meanwhile, the bright cloud on the left is said to be connected to storm activity. 11 of Uranus’ 13 rings and six of its 27 known moons are visible in the image. The rest of the bright spots are said to be background galaxies.

As the seventh planet from the Sun, a full orbit from Uranus takes 84 years as it rotates on its side at a 90-degree angle. Its unique trajectory causes the planet to experience extreme seasons defined by years of constant sunlight followed by an equal number of years of complete darkness.

Take a closer look at the images above.

In other news, scientists capture footage of a fish at record-breaking depths.

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