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Questions about Uranus.

  1. Jun 27, 2011 #1
    I have just finished reading Cosmos by Giles Sparrow and after reading about the odd features of Uranus I have been thinking about it and was wondering...

    Could Uranus's tilt and off-centered magnetic field be the result of a large moon or planetoid that was "swallowed" by the planet.

    It is thought that the tilt is related to a large collision, but if Uranus is mostly gas and liquid then what if a moon or planetoid with a large iron core and its own magnetic field fell into Uranus?
  2. jcsd
  3. Jun 30, 2011 #2


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    I suppose its possible. I'm not sure there's any real way to tell unless you do some serious computer models.
  4. Jun 30, 2011 #3
    It's not improbable because it does make sense. There were many collisions between many planets and asteroids. Our own Earth was made from two larger planets colliding, knowing that, it makes sense that Uranus would be hit by a planetoid or moon with a large iron core and so would give Uranus its tilt.
  5. Jun 30, 2011 #4


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    Are you reading my sig? I think I need to color that or something lol...
  6. Jul 1, 2011 #5
    The off centre field is probably due to the field being generated in a conducting layer away from the core itself. Neptune's field does something similar. The magnetic field doesn't need an iron core to be generated, just moving charges and sufficient conductivity.

    Doesn't mean the collision you describe didn't happen, but it's not an explanation for the field.
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