The Discovery of Uranus

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In 1781, an oboe player discovered the first new planet since antiquity. The History Guy recalls a solar system shattering event that represented an era of scientific inquiry. It is history that deserves to be remembered.

An earlier version included an error regarding Uranus' orbit.

This is original content based on research by The History Guy. Images in the Public Domain are carefully selected and provide illustration. As very few images of the actual event are available in the Public Domain, images of similar objects and events are used for illustration.

You can purchase the Constellation Space bow tie worn in this episode at The Tie Bar:

All events are portrayed in historical context and for educational purposes. No images or content are primarily intended to shock and disgust. Those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it. Non censuram.

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Script by THG

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  • Get MagellanTV here: & get an exclusive offer extended to our viewers: an extra month FREE. MagellanTV is a new kind of streaming service run by filmmakers with 2,000+ documentaries! Check out our personal recommendation and MagellanTV’s exclusive playlists: An earlier posting of this episode included an error about the planet's orbit.

    The History Guy: History Deserves to Be RememberedThe History Guy: History Deserves to Be RememberedЖилийн өмнө
    • Thanks. A subject near and dear to my heart: taught college Astronomy part-time for 27 years. Full time I worked during that same 27 year period at the Adler Planetarium in Chicago, in which we had an exhibit titled "The Discovery of Uranus," which had as its centerpiece an actual telescope made by Herschel. Needless to say, pretty much every grade and high school student passing by the exhibit pretty much made the same joke(s), based on its putative pronunciation. Thanks again, and yes, love your channel. Pat in Chicago

      Patrick F.Patrick F.10 сарын өмнө
    • The discovery of Neptune is also very interesting! I've read the book "The Neptune Files" and I think it would be a great future episode for you!

      Lloyd Arsen BalbasLloyd Arsen BalbasЖилийн өмнө
    • @The History Guy: History Deserves to Be Remembered Appreciate the reference. My argument is with NASA then. I'll let you know how they respond: AMBIGUOUS/MISLEADING/ERRONEOUS: "This unique tilt causes the most extreme seasons in the solar system. For nearly a quarter of each Uranian year, the Sun shines directly over each pole, plunging the other half of the planet into a 21-year-long, dark winter." 1. The sun never shines "directly" over the pole of Uranus. At the Summer solstice the sun is 7.77 degrees from "directly" over the facing pole. 2. The poles and sun are in a "direct" vertical plane only for an instant twice each orbit, every 42 years. "Directly" is misleading. 3. (My biggest issue) ERROR: Summer and winter do not correspond to the 21 years that the sun is "directly" highest over/furthest from the poles. The Summer/Winter solstices occur in the middle of that period which runs from mid-Spring to mid-Summer (mid-Fall to mid-Winter) as the seasons are defined on earth. 4. ERROR: The switch between whole hemispheres being light or dark for 21 years is not accurate. Light and dark vary from 42 years each at the poles to daily from the Uranian arctic circles (+/- 7.77 degrees) to the equator. If you want a weird factoid in this area, Uranus' respective "tropical" circles (Cancer & Capricorn on earth), where the sun is overhead at the solstices (+/-82.23 degrees), are actually north and south of Uranus' arctic circles (+/- 7.77 degrees), where the geometric sun center does not rise for 1 day, the case for any tilt from 45 to 135 degrees. 5. ERROR: Darkness lasts 21 years or more only from about 50 degrees north or south to the poles. Those are fractions far less than "half the planet". I realize this page is for the non-technical public but IMO it should still be worded accurately. Thank You.

      Didivs IvlianvsDidivs IvlianvsЖилийн өмнө
    • Didivs Ivlianvs The NASA description is “This unique tilt causes the most extreme seasons in the solar system. For nearly a quarter of each Uranian year, the sun shines directly over each pole, plunging the other half of the planet into a 21 year long dark winter.” I believe that my description in the episode is consistent with that provided by NASA.

      The History Guy: History Deserves to Be RememberedThe History Guy: History Deserves to Be RememberedЖилийн өмнө
    • @The History Guy: History Deserves to Be Remembered I figured you were thinking in terms of seasons. But that is mistaken as well. In earthly seasons, the sun rises at a pole on the first day of Spring and sets on the first day of Fall, ignoring atmospheric refraction that causes the sun to appear to rise a few days early and set a few days late. That pole points most directly at the sun on the first day of Summer and the sun goes down from there. The "1/4 of the orbit" that earth or any planet's pole points most directly toward the sun begins therefore in mid-Spring and ends in mid-Summer, a period with no major recognition. The significance of Summer, even though the sun is going down the entire season, is that the period of greatest heat comes after the period of greatest heating. You are better off noting the 1/2 orbit periods when the sun is above or below the horizon at the poles of every planet than using an ambiguous term for an arbitrary period with no correspondence to any commonly used period which you did not define until the post to which I am responding.

      Didivs IvlianvsDidivs IvlianvsЖилийн өмнө
  • The discovery of Uranus is a very private moment in each child's life and hardly a fitting subject for such a public forum

    William HartleyWilliam HartleyӨдрийн өмнө
  • The backyard tinkerer, the purest example of human curiosity. We owe them everything and shared encourage them in their efforts when possible.

    Kenny HaganKenny Hagan4 өдрийн өмнө
  • I really appreciate the backdoor and your placing Hershey in his historic context. You are my favorite history popularizer.

    Eric NussbergerEric Nussberger5 өдрийн өмнө
  • So, funny. How many noticed, he pronounced it both ways during the presentation?

    BenBen11 өдрийн өмнө
  • i love History ...

    Mark DuxberryMark Duxberry16 өдрийн өмнө
  • Hard to understand how a moving planet is represented on a 'star chart'.

    Mark GarinMark Garin17 өдрийн өмнө
  • Uuuh Huhh huh huh uh

    John SheetzJohn SheetzСарын өмнө
  • I'm 38 and still chuckle at the butt reference.

    Joseph AJoseph AСарын өмнө
  • There are brown rings around Uranus...

    Carlos DeCisnerosateCarlos DeCisnerosate2 сарын өмнө
  • When did they start referring to the planet as "Uranus", and not as *Your Anus?*

    Bruce Willis Hard to KillBruce Willis Hard to Kill2 сарын өмнө
    • @The History Guy: History Deserves to Be Remembered Thank you for that! Cheers!

      Bruce Willis Hard to KillBruce Willis Hard to Kill2 сарын өмнө
    • @Bruce Willis Hard to Kill neither pronunciation quite matches the Greek, and both are acceptable pronunciations of the word. The pronunciation YOU-reh-nuss that I used has most always been that preferred by astronomers, but it has more commonly been pronounced your-RAY-nuss in the US, probably because that more closely matches the phonetic spelling, despite sounding like “your anus.” If you have noticed what appeared to be a change during your lifetime, that likely occurred in the 1990s. During that time astronomers reclassified Neptune and Uranus as ice giants rather than gas giants. The scientific clarification made the news. News anchors, apparently, preferred the astronomers’ pronunciation to saying “your anus.” But, again, neither pronunciation is new, and both are grammatically acceptable.

      The History Guy: History Deserves to Be RememberedThe History Guy: History Deserves to Be Remembered2 сарын өмнө
    • @The History Guy: History Deserves to Be Remembered Of course sir ... rather, I mean when did people in general begin using a change in the pronunciation? Enjoy your content immensely!

      Bruce Willis Hard to KillBruce Willis Hard to Kill2 сарын өмнө
    • I used the proper pronunciation.

      The History Guy: History Deserves to Be RememberedThe History Guy: History Deserves to Be Remembered2 сарын өмнө
  • Posteriorly hilarious.

    Strange AeonsStrange Aeons3 сарын өмнө
  • @ 6:00 fun fact if u focus really hard on it u can make out the terrain as well. Ive heard the restaurants there make the best Philly cheesesteak

    Murfie's law DefinedMurfie's law Defined3 сарын өмнө
  • "Ur-anus" 🤣

    Isaac WilsonIsaac Wilson3 сарын өмнө
  • Yer.....hee hee. Love yer videos!

    Robert BergrenRobert Bergren5 сарын өмнө
  • What does the starship Enterprise and toilet paper have in common?..

    Terrance ArndtTerrance Arndt5 сарын өмнө
  • now I gotta go listen to nanowar of steel

    mayoite160mayoite1605 сарын өмнө
  • "While no probe has yet been sent...with the express mission of exploring Uranus..." lol...

    Toughen Up, FluffyToughen Up, Fluffy5 сарын өмнө
  • "Urine us," or "your anus." Either way, it's hysterical.

    Toughen Up, FluffyToughen Up, Fluffy5 сарын өмнө
  • The History Guy said I can say it that way so it's okay.

    Alan UnpronounceableAlan Unpronounceable6 сарын өмнө
  • Uranal

    teknicianmuzikteknicianmuzik6 сарын өмнө
  • I clicked on this just to see how bad the comments and puns would be. I'm not disappointed. I bet Farnsworth didn't know it was right behind him the whole time. (Sorry, could not resist, and again.)

    Weesel71Weesel717 сарын өмнө
  • Im going to sign up for a Patreon account to support you. It is because of educators like you that I do not complain about paying taxes even though I have no children. I want everyone to enjoy this as much as I do.

    Jonathan R.Jonathan R.7 сарын өмнө
  • My young child recently pointed to the word Uranus and asked what does it say? The next generation of Uranus smirkers continues.....

    lee eldridgelee eldridge7 сарын өмнө
  • I'm not really interested in the topic but I just HAD to read the comments. I'm not disappointed.

    indy_go_blue60indy_go_blue607 сарын өмнө
  • Herschel is better known as a composer than oboist. English composers of that era would all be better know if it wasn't for Handel.

    presbyterosBassIpresbyterosBassI8 сарын өмнө
  • Has Uranus been explored by a probe?

    GaryGary8 сарын өмнө
  • Awesome.....thanks for a great lesson!

    Terry RothsTerry Roths8 сарын өмнө
  • excellent

    X XX X8 сарын өмнө
  • All this talk about Uranus reminds me I need to call my proctologist😜

    Shawn Beckmann1Shawn Beckmann18 сарын өмнө
  • What do Charmin toilet paper and Starship Enterprise have in common.....Both head for Uranus to wipe out the Klingons

    carpe diemcarpe diem9 сарын өмнө
  • In the late 19th century, astrologers associated Uranus with the color electric blue, discovery and travel. I.e., space exploration, today. And the symbol of Uranus? An H connected to a circle with a dot at the center. A 3D version is a constitution class starship. Just a coincidence, I’m sure. Symbology, how does it work?

    John ChristopherJohn Christopher9 сарын өмнө
  • I was 14yrs old when she first introduced me to her.... oops! Sorry,! Wrong forum! 🤤

    George BGeorge B9 сарын өмнө
  • I love the way you capture "all the history" out there, eg: the pronunciation of the word Uranus.

    James BattlesJames Battles9 сарын өмнө
  • More things should start with the oboe.

    Jonathan TillianJonathan Tillian9 сарын өмнө
  • During those times that the poles are pointed at the sun, one pole would have a long summer, but during the time that the poles are 90 degrees to the sun, the planet would have a 17 hour day, with a rising and setting sun every day, right?

    Doug PriceDoug Price9 сарын өмнө
  • Look...I definitely credit this guy for his focus. I have factual dad jokes to last me for the next 10 years. For that I thank Thee.

    Find ContinuityFind Continuity9 сарын өмнө
  • Several confusions here.

    Jan SugalskiJan Sugalski9 сарын өмнө
  • Uranus is an ice giant??

    Jan SugalskiJan Sugalski9 сарын өмнө
  • I wonder if President Clinton ever considered sending a probe to Uranus to distract the people and the press from any of his many controversies?

    Boyd The GoofballBoyd The Goofball9 сарын өмнө
  • I remember when I discovered Myanus.... It too was unprecedented.

    00 Coyote00 Coyote9 сарын өмнө
  • I love how some scientists in their pompousity started pronouncing it Ura-nus

    Qwert VoltaireQwert Voltaire9 сарын өмнө
  • How can I forget my anus I use it every morning :-)

    Karl SmallphonesKarl Smallphones9 сарын өмнө
  • This morning was the first time I’ve ever laid actual eyes on Uranus (haha) with my first telescope, a Celestron 4” Refractor. You can actually see the color of the planet with good enough optics, even with moderate light pollution (and excellent viewing weather and angles). It was literally visible from my driveway! Now I’m hooked on astronomy and history.

    likeaZ6likeaZ610 сарын өмнө
  • You heard it viewers; It's impossible to see Ur anus without a telescope; Says the history guy!!!

    Rafter RafterRafter Rafter10 сарын өмнө
  • How could one not be captivated by a title like Uranus and other Forgotten History. I know it shouldn't but I it makes me smile

    a1b1c184a1b1c18410 сарын өмнө
  • I was so curious about the heavens as a boy in the 50's.I studied and yearned for and now we have it. Extraordinary times we live in !

    Jon JorstadJon Jorstad10 сарын өмнө
  • Some call it Uranus ...most call it your anus .

    Andrew GardenerAndrew Gardener10 сарын өмнө
  • March 13th. My birthday.

    elfpimp1elfpimp110 сарын өмнө
  • One thing I know about this planet: it has a very smelly history....

    Rodrigo GoncalvesRodrigo Goncalves10 сарын өмнө
  • What does the Enterprise space ship have in common with toilet paper?

    Ma ONMa ON10 сарын өмнө
  • Has anyone else noted the uncanny resemblance of Christiaan Huygens to Dave Mustaine. In fact many of the paintings and pictures chosen of the dudes mentioned have them actually looking human and relatable. They'd make ideal mass media pics- Huygens' band could either be something very glam rock or utterly psychoshocking, Issac Newton would possibly be found harassed in an accounting dept. If you see Couch Adams on certain dating apps it wouldn't be surprising, but tell someone where you'll be found if you can, Herschel junior probably partied hard on Ibiza, yet did well in rehab and could be quite a regular on QI if he remembers to take the dried frog pills. Geo III was clearly mad anyway so if he talked to trees and lost the colonies it serves him right if he took advice from a colonial plant in 1776.

    Neil BainNeil Bain10 сарын өмнө
  • Another MNthe pundit has done a video just about the pronunciation of this planet's name...and came to the conclusion that it should be "oo-RAHN-os" to be more in line with how it would be pronounced in the original Greek

    lp2317lp231710 сарын өмнө
  • He pronounces it as "urine-us" so people won't laugh.

    Nolan McKinneyNolan McKinney10 сарын өмнө

    Socially DistantSocially Distant10 сарын өмнө
  • Space Balls: I ❤ Uranus lol

    Charles DudekCharles Dudek10 сарын өмнө
  • Does anyone else think that the ending theme bears some similarities with “It’s All Been Done” by Bare Naked Ladies? - Lance, any connection there? If anyone needs a refresher, I think it’s a great song, and hey, it deserves to be remembered - LOL ... anyway,

    Kenneth VaughanKenneth Vaughan10 сарын өмнө
  • "If the Earth were about the size of a nickel, Uranus would be about the size of a softball." Oh god... NASA, please pick a proper sphere with regard to Earth in the future. Don't encourage the Flat Earth nitwits any more than has already been done.

    Sterling CrockettSterling Crockett10 сарын өмнө
    • Yeah, give the Flat Earthers no quarter. It doesn't make cents.

      Emily AdamsEmily Adams18 цагийн өмнө
  • I am a little surprised that both pronunciations ('Uranus' w/ accent on first or second syllable) are accepted. This is ironic not just because of the joke, but because 'Uranus' comes from the Greek word Ουρανός, which as you all can plainly see, has the accent on the third and *last* syllable!

    SpectatorAliusSpectatorAlius10 сарын өмнө
  • It would be way way way way way cooler if we had a planet today called "Georgia". As was the original plan :(

    Matt HorkanMatt Horkan10 сарын өмнө
  • They all looked at me and said, “you couldn’t find Uranus”. Hell, there it is!

    J RayJ Ray10 сарын өмнө
  • It's impressive. They say you can fit 4 earths in to it...5 if you relax enough.

    Randy PullmanRandy Pullman10 сарын өмнө
  • Did you pan across a diagram of a reflecting telescope while describing a refracting telescope? 😛

    Adam WishneuskyAdam Wishneusky11 сарын өмнө
  • Also a ‘space fan. Only one tiny FYI: the man’s name is pronounced: Christian HOY-guns. Been at this for years. This is good.

    Christine StillChristine Still11 сарын өмнө
  • Who found Uranus first? Yo momma! she was changing your diapers!

    Crazy 8s DrumsCrazy 8s Drums11 сарын өмнө
  • You might devote a segment to Caroline Herschel, who is worth looking into on her own right.

    John HobsonJohn Hobson11 сарын өмнө

    EJR_EJAYEJR_EJAY11 сарын өмнө
  • Is it funny that an oboist should find a new planet? What do you have against musicians? Or is it just oboists that you think are funny? Sorry, I'm just pulling your leg. Thanks for yet one more great episode. Way back over fifty years ago, when I was in high school, my History teacher was Mr. Vernon Dunn. Although he regaled us with stories of his adventures during World War II, (he was a sailor aboard the USS Enterprise aircraft carrier), he was never as informative as you always are. Sometimes I watch, even though I already know the stories, and other times just to learn something totally new, like today. I hadn't know of his musical background, nor of his son's contributions. So, once again,. thanks for a great show. My 70th birthday is coming up on August 20th. As I'm retired and living on a fixed income, I'm afraid I can't become a Patreon supporter of your channel, but just know that those of us who are on the poorer side of life, still enjoy History, because EVERYONE deserves to be remembered.

    Alan RogersAlan Rogers11 сарын өмнө
  • Hey, history guy! The Ancients were well aware of the existance of Uranus........and even Pluto as well.

    Samuhel TompkinsSamuhel Tompkins11 сарын өмнө
  • I know there are other ways of gaining such information, but none more engaging or entertaining. Thank you.

    Spencer GrantSpencer Grant11 сарын өмнө
  • Perhaps his oboe was actually a little telescope so he could check out that fetching redhead violist in the 3rd chair. That's the story I'm going with. Thank you, History Guy!

    The Devil In The CircuitThe Devil In The Circuit11 сарын өмнө
  • Did anyone else notice the star field pattern of his bow tie? As others have commented, there's a lot more to history than military battles.

    David WiseDavid Wise11 сарын өмнө
  • I do enjoy your presentations, Mr. History Guy, but after having viewed a number of them, I have to mention that whenever you appear in person, I find myself waiting for you fall over to your right. Submitted for your consideration.

    carmiumcarmium11 сарын өмнө
  • Uhhhhh huhhh huhhh, he said "your-anus". Huhhh huhhh.

    Rick RiversRick Rivers11 сарын өмнө
  • There is nothing funny about Uranus except maybe that it was going to be named after a king. Both are full of gas after all.

    darkcoeficientdarkcoeficient11 сарын өмнө
  • When the rest of the planets go Roman, Uranus goes Greek.

    Dissonant DissidentDissonant Dissident11 сарын өмнө
  • And all this time I thought Uranus was flat. Ulent.

    jeff silvermanjeff silverman11 сарын өмнө
  • Thanks for the astronomy episode. Love it.

    Jason PlantJason Plant11 сарын өмнө
  • You found is easy because of: only 5 miles No powder and balls. No food supply for multiply days No sleeping gear, extra clothing and other equipment. Adding the extra weight and/or taking 10+ miles will quickly make a huge difference.

    Thomas AagaardThomas Aagaard11 сарын өмнө
  • So y'all never discovered my anus?

  • Imagine Herschel's delighted comment to his wife : " my darling ! I've found Uranus".....

    mongo moonbladdermongo moonbladderЖилийн өмнө
  • I don't care what you people say, "Ur Anus" always was and will forever be funny

    OverwatchOverwatchЖилийн өмнө
  • 12:20 And it is, sir. It most definitely is.

    Doug JBDoug JBЖилийн өмнө
  • So, lemme see if I got this straight: Almost 250 years ago a German military oboe player discovered a giant ball of gas in his bath while naked in his back yard, wanted to name it after GeorgeIII but got shouted down in favor of Uranus, and we still haven’t probed it?

    Doug JBDoug JBЖилийн өмнө
  • C’mon “Your Anus” pronunciation is way more of an attention grabber. 🤣

    Paul FassePaul FasseЖилийн өмнө
  • Nice! In less than 120 seconds you name off 5 the greatest astronomical geniuses that ever were! I can't imagine what people would have thought back then about the 'optical devices' these guys were building. I mean, I still remember the first time I saw the rings of Saturn with my own eyes.....using an inexpensive telescope..... it sort of grounds you. As in.... whoa... it does exist. It's not just something you heard about.... it's really out there..... And here these guys are using math to predict orbits and building devices off huge scale for that time to verify the math. Amazing. Thanks for the video....

    8 Square Feet8 Square FeetЖилийн өмнө
  • I hope I'm still alive when we launch space probes at Uranus. Probing Uranus will be a significant leap forward for the scientific community.

    Marcus DanielMarcus DanielЖилийн өмнө
  • To stop the stupid jokes, let's just pronounce it more like the actual Greeks do: oo-RAN-os.

    LaikaLycanthropeLaikaLycanthropeЖилийн өмнө
  • Real talk: at what point did Uranus become immature joke fodder?

    John PorteousJohn PorteousЖилийн өмнө
  • My favorite planet! Look at its rotation!

    Micheal KellyMicheal KellyЖилийн өмнө
  • Don't mind me. I am just here for the comments.

    Conor StapletonConor StapletonЖилийн өмнө
  • That's not how I pronounce it.

    39satcom39satcomЖилийн өмнө
  • Wrong. John Couch Adams is the discoverer and knew it's orbit first.

    Sunny JimSunny JimЖилийн өмнө
  • There was also an attempt to name the planet Hershel, but that doesn't seem to have gone further than a few relatively obscure esoteric societies practicing somewhat idiosyncratic forms of astrology.

    David EvensDavid EvensЖилийн өмнө
  • Uranus is not out of surprises yet. Its unique tilt, that puts the north pole of the planet actually below the ecliptic, has never been adequately explained -- nor why its rings and moons orbit what would be Uranus's equator, perpendicular to the axis of rotation as with all the other planets with moons. The supposition that some sort of ancient impact "tilted" Uranus cannot account for the orientation of its rings and moons, nor have we seen evidence anywhere in the Solar System or elsewhere that such tilts result from impacts. We now know that both Earth and Mars sustained terrific impacts by planetary-sized bodies early in their history, and yet their rotational axes were not appreciably moved. But in the time since the discovery of Uranus, we have discovered that the creation of the planets was not a smooth, relatively placid process of collecting dust from the protoplanetary disk as we once presumed. We are still learning the process, and do not have yet a timeline showing when the planets formed, or where, or how they moved inward or outward from the sun after formation, responding to the gravity of their brethren planets. Some computational models of planet formation only produce the gas giants we see if we presume there was a fifth such world that, after formation, was propelled from the solar system by the gravitational effects of the others. It seems to me that, although not yet shown it would happen, Uranus was created at the same time as the other planets of our Sun, but orbiting a different star, also newly formed from the primordial nebula that produced the Sun and other stars as it collapsed. Distance between these stars would have been much reduced in the old nebula, and it is possible that the solar system gave up a world in the process of ordering its planets, and absorbed a new member ejected from some other protoplanetary formation disk. If this is the case, then examination of the Uranian atmosphere might reveal a difference in the balance of isotopes of elements from hydrogen to nitrogen to carbon than exists in the other planets. But this awaits the dispatch of a probe capable of penetrating and analyzing the Uranian atmosphere, something we might have to wait another fifty years or so to see. I expect planetary astronomy in the meantime to be getting far more interesting than at present. Our first visits to Mercury and analysis of its crust show a surprisingly large amount of elements like phosphorus and sulfur that should have been cooked off Mercury's surface long ago... if the planet had always been at its present distance from the Sun. It may be that it was not always so close. But we do not yet understand what forces could have moved it -- any more than we understand the origins of the Mars impactor or the lost planet Theia, that collided with the proto-Earth and left enough material in orbit to form our moon. In time, we may imagine configurations and dynamics that could produce such movements, such collisions. I certainly hope so. And we may find that the oldest evidence of planetary bodies from other star systems was sitting out past Saturn all this time, turning on its side like a wheel torn off a crashed car. I don't know. But I do know that seeking the answers is going to be a great deal of fun. I expect to hear the sound of dropping jaws from here to Moscow as we theorize, measure and experiment. I can't wait!

    Peter RoganPeter RoganЖилийн өмнө
    • @Peter Rogan OK, go back to your superstitious hiding under a rock and denying that there are planets in the sky. You have adequately demonstrated that you refuse to look at the modeling that shows all the processes I have described do, in fact, inevitably occur.

      David EvensDavid EvensСарын өмнө
    • @David Evens Speaking of contradictions, you have now confused gravitational effects with tidal effects, which are not only a distinctly different kind of force, but one whose strength varies quite a good deal more than gravitational forces. Tidal forces increase as to the cube of the distance between bodies, not the square. And appearance is not as you imagine so conclusively revealing as to the origin of a shattered body. Else our own moon would show the effects of being gathered out of blasted material from the Theia collision, which it does not. The same with Mars, whose lower northern hemisphere is due to a process of formation not so easily understood as the result of a collision. We have much more to discover here to answer the questions of planetary formation in all these instances. And in any case, you have to explain what simultaneous disaster could have shattered the moons of Uranus and then moved the debris to new orbits parallel with the equator and reassembled them. No force short of God or magic could produce these results -- and in any case it requires a much more complex series of unique accidents and interactions than simply letting the moons retain their original motion and geometry as they transited, with Uranus, from one young protoplanetary system to another. The cosmic dance of billiards your 'explanation' would require does not exist in nature. Where have you ever seen the like, in this solar system or elsewhere? I daresay you have not.

      Peter RoganPeter RoganСарын өмнө
    • @Peter Rogan You have contradicted yourself all over the place. Pretending that tidal interactions don't shift the orbits of moons is stupid. Pretending that there cannot be the destruction of moons while they shift orbits and simultaneously claiming that the forces required to shift orbits are greater than the forces required to destroy the moons is stupid. Pretending that planets do not obey the laws of physics is stupid. Start by actually LOOKING at the pictures of the moons of Uranus, that clearly show terrain that doesn't look like it belongs on the same moon, separated by regions of parallel high mountain ridges. Those fit very nicely into a model where the moons broke up and reformed, with the pieces not necessarily ending up in the same body as all the other pieces of the original body. The mountain ridges are the result of denser rocks and metals sinking through the less dense ices and forcing up mountains at the interfaces.

      David EvensDavid EvensЖилийн өмнө
    • @David Evens You presume that a collision 'tilted' Uranus and now are trying to find an excuse to fix the moons and rings. We have no evidence whatsoever that the Uranian moons were fragmented and reformed en masse. What your presumption requires is some sort of force that would force debris to change their orbital plane all at once and in the same direction at the same angle and then, having somehow retained their distance from Uranus, re-form into small moons, and you have chosen gravity, which is not so selective as you pretend. There is no physical reason for debris orbiting a body to change the direction or angle of their orbital path simply because the body below them is spinning in a different direction. You are presuming that debris would follow the spin, as a spoon makes particles spin in your cocoa. This is simply not possible. If it were, satellites in Earth orbit would gradually be dragged into more equatorial orbits, which simply does not happen. The energy required to cause a change in the planar orientation of any orbiting mass is quite great -- much greater than you imagine. Gravity alone would not accomplish this. In fact, the energy required to shift the orbital plane of any natural rocky or icy body is greater than the force required to destroy said object. You would need to exert force on the object for some extended period of time to cause it to change its orbital plane without fracturing it. We have no evidence for such. And your entire premise is based on the mistaken notion that planets operate like billiard balls, rebounding when struck and spinning in the direction they are moving. No, no, no. Doesn't happen.

      Peter RoganPeter RoganЖилийн өмнө
    • There is another detail of the moons of Uranus that provides a clue as to why they orbit the planet's equator, even after it tilted more than 90 degrees over: All of them appear to have been shattered and reformed. The supposition is that tidal interactions with Uranus would have disturbed their orbits so badly while dragging them back towards being equatorial that the moons collided with each other and smashed into fragments, many quite large, which reformed into large moons again, more in the plane of the planet's equator.

      David EvensDavid EvensЖилийн өмнө
  • :-) note on pronunciation.. is Bodie the Bode of Bode's Law? In which case his name is Bode and not Bodie.

    Kelvin KerseyKelvin KerseyЖилийн өмнө
  • Where was Uranus on the ecliptic when Herschel discovered it? It would be neat to mark Uranus, Neptune, & Pluto's anniversary of their discoveries, enumerated in their years. Pluto hasn't had its FIRST anniversary yet, while Neptune had it's first around 2011-12.

    JBTechConJBTechConЖилийн өмнө
  • I'm 73 and since I was a child I have pronounced Uranus with a long a. Until today I've never considered Uranus anything other than a planet. I can only assume that my use of that pronunciation has caused many giggles over the years.

    Jim HumphreyJim HumphreyЖилийн өмнө
  • I just came here to verify what I already knew. That the very first, and almost all of the rest, of the comments would be about the name of the planet. Even if they changed the name, the comments would be about what the name used to be.

    TheOtherMikeTheOtherMikeЖилийн өмнө
  • be careful folks Sailor Pluto is pissed right now, and in the past .. and will be in the future ...

    derHutschiderHutschiЖилийн өмнө