Jul 11

Neptune completes first orbit since discovery in 1846

Source: NASA/Hubble Space Telescope

Today, Neptune has arrived at the same location in space where it was discovered nearly 165 years ago. To commemorate the event, NASA's Hubble Space Telescope has taken these "anniversary pictures" of the blue-green giant planet.


Birthday pictures of Neptune by Hubble Space Telescope.
Credit: NASA, ESA, and the Hubble Heritage Team (STScI/AURA).


Neptune is the most distant major planet in our solar system. German astronomer Johann Galle discovered the planet on September 23, 1846. At the time, the discovery doubled the size of the known solar system. The planet is 2.8 billion miles (4.5 billion kilometers) from the Sun, 30 times farther than Earth. Under the Sun's weak pull at that distance, Neptune plods along in its huge orbit, slowly completing one revolution approximately every 165 years. (read more)

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