What is the weather on Saturn?
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Q:

What is the weather on Saturn?

A:

Quick Answer

With an average temperature of minus 288 degrees Fahrenheit and frequent, powerful storms throughout the planet, Saturn is not hospitable to life. Unlike most planets in the Milky Way, Saturn derives its heat from its core rather than from the Sun. The planet is known as a gas giant; it is primarily composed of gases, including hydrogen and molecular helium.

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Clouds cover Saturn, with the upper layer of clouds consisting of ammonia ice. Beneath that is a layer of ammonium hydro-sulfate clouds. The lowest layer of clouds on the planet are water clouds. The storms that occur on Saturn do so around its rings. A single storm is capable of lasting for many years.

Saturn's interior temperatures climb as high as 21,000 degrees Fahrenheit. The planet radiates twice the heat it receives from the sun, which is located 891 million miles away in space. Scientists speculate that the interior heat is created by the planet's gravitational compression as well as by the friction occurring as helium regularly seeps into the planet's core. Most of what scientists know about conditions on Saturn comes from data gathered during the Voyager I and Voyager II space flights that occurred in 1980 and 1981 respectively.

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Related Questions

  • Q:

    What is the temperature on Saturn?

    A:

    The effective surface temperature of Saturn is minus 288 degrees Fahrenheit. The planet's longitudinal temperatures remain fairly constant, varying only about 18 degrees between its northern pole and its equator, but its chemical composition causes the temperature to increase dramatically closer to the center of the planet.

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  • Q:

    What is the hottest temperature on Saturn?

    A:

    The hottest temperature on Saturn is estimated to be 11,700 degrees Celsius at its core. Saturn's core is composed of liquid metallic hydrogen that is formed by the compression forces surrounding the core. The energy that radiates from the planet is twice what it receives from the Sun.

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  • Q:

    What is Saturn's average temperature?

    A:

    Saturn's average temperature is minus 288 degrees Fahrenheit, or minus 178 degrees Celsius. While there is some temperature variation between the poles and the equator, Saturn's temperature is fairly consistent since much of its heat comes from the planet's interior rather than the sun.

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  • Q:

    Is Saturn hot or cold?

    A:

    Saturn is a mostly cold planet, with areas that reach temperatures as low as minus 270 F. There are some regions of the planet that feature temperatures of 80 F, but these remain unfriendly, having an extremely high atmospheric pressure.

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