Why is Uranus tipped on its side?
Could you please explain why Uranus is laying/spinning on its side?
The reason for Uranusí tilt is still a big mystery. Most astronomers do not believe that the planet formed this way and was instead knocked on its side by an impact in its early history. The collision could have been with any object large enough to cause the tilt. However there are still a few questions this theory does not answer. For instance, why does Uranus still have a nearly circular orbit like most of the other planets if it was knocked so hard? And if its moons were formed before the collision, why are their orbits also so nearly circular?
Get More 'Curious?' with Our New PODCAST:
- Podcast? Subscribe? Tell me about the Ask an Astronomer Podcast
- Subscribe to our Podcast | Listen to our current Episode
- Cool! But I can't now. Send me a quick reminder now for later.
How to ask a question:
If you have a follow-up question concerning the above subject, submit it here. If you have a question about another area of astronomy, find the topic you're interested in from the archive on our site menu, or go here for help.Table 'curious.Referrers' doesn't existTable 'curious.Referrers' doesn't exist
This page has been accessed 31231 times since February 26, 2006.
Last modified: April 25, 2006 4:37:19 PM
Ask an Astronomer is hosted by the Astronomy Department at Cornell University and is produced with PHP and MySQL.
Warning: Your browser is misbehaving! This page might look ugly. (Details)