Read the Beforeitsnews.com story here. Advertise at Before It's News here.
Profile image
By Universe Today (Reporter)
Contributor profile | More stories
Story Views
Now:
Last hour:
Last 24 hours:
Total:

Why do Uranus and Neptune Have Magnetic Fields? Hot ice

% of readers think this story is Fact. Add your two cents.


The outer “ice giant” planets, Neptune and Uranus, have plenty of mysteries.  One of the biggest is where exactly they got their magnetic fields.  They are strong at that, with Neptune’s being twenty-seven times more powerful than Earth’s, while Uranus’ varies between ?  and four times Earth’s strength.  Chaos rules in these electromagnetic environments, making them exceptionally hard to both understand and model.  Now a team of researchers led by Dr. Vitali Prakpenka of the University of Chicago thinks they might have found the underlying cause of both the field’s strength and its randomness – “hot ice.”

In chemistry, ice comes in many different forms.  That doesn’t mean different shapes like a cube or a ball but different crystalline lattice structures that fundamentally alter some of its chemical properties. Regular ice uses the hydrogen bond between the oxygen and hydrogen in water to hold itself together.

Video showing Neptune’s gravitational field.
Credit – VideoFromSpace YouTube Channel

However, at extremely high temperatures and pressures, those crystal lattices can form such that the hydrogen atoms in the water can move freely throughout the lattice.  Since hydrogen atoms are charged, this is the equivalent of transferring an electrical charge throughout the lattice structure.  In other words, if created in the right conditions, ice can be electrically conductive.

Known as “superionic ice,” this unique form of ice has been the focus of research for decades, with conflicting results regarding how to achieve this form.  As many scientists do, Dr. Prakpenka and his team decided to throw high-powered instruments at the problem.  In their case, they used the Advanced Photon Source’s high-energy synchrotron x-ray beam at Argonne National Laboratory to probe the details of the formation process.

UT video discussing sending a mission back to the ice giants.

What they found required thousands of runs on the system over more than ten years.  The data eventually pointed to two different conditions that could result in two different types of superionic ice.  One of those sets of conditions happens to be similar to conditions in the internal atmospheres of the ice giants.

Scientists have long thought that fluid layers at relatively shallow depths in their atmospheres caused the ice giant’s unique magnetic fields.  Simulations bore out this theory, but the idea of superionic ice could upend that theory.  More research is needed before this theory can be proven.  While the conditions are suitable for the formation of superionic ice on the ice giants, and it seems to be able to generate the magnetic fields seen around the planets, there is still a lot of work to do to prove that superionic ice is actually the cause of these fields.  It’s almost like it would be a good idea to send a mission out there.

Learn More:
Carnegie Science – How Do Ice Giants Maintain Their Magnetic Fields?
Nature Physics – Structure and properties of two superionic ice phases
UT – Both Uranus and Neptune Have Really Bizarre Magnetic Fields
UT – Exploring the Universe For Magnetic Fields

Lead Image:
Interior of Neptune
Credit – Vadim Sadovski

The post Why do Uranus and Neptune Have Magnetic Fields? Hot ice appeared first on Universe Today.



Source: https://www.universetoday.com/152999/why-do-uranus-and-neptune-have-magnetic-fields-hot-ice/


Before It’s News® is a community of individuals who report on what’s going on around them, from all around the world.

Anyone can join.
Anyone can contribute.
Anyone can become informed about their world.

"United We Stand" Click Here To Create Your Personal Citizen Journalist Account Today, Be Sure To Invite Your Friends.

Please Help Support BeforeitsNews by trying our Natural Health Products below!


Order by Phone at 888-809-8385 or online at https://mitocopper.com M - F 9am to 5pm EST

Order by Phone at 888-388-7003 or online at https://www.herbanomic.com M - F 9am to 5pm EST

Order by Phone at 888-388-7003 or online at https://www.herbanomics.com M - F 9am to 5pm EST


Humic & Fulvic Trace Minerals Complex - Nature's most important supplement! Vivid Dreams again!

HNEX HydroNano EXtracellular Water - Improve immune system health and reduce inflammation

Ultimate Clinical Potency Curcumin - Natural pain relief, reduce inflammation and so much more.

MitoCopper - Bioavailable Copper destroys pathogens and gives you more energy. (See Blood Video)
Oxy Powder - Natural Colon Cleanser!  Cleans out toxic buildup with oxygen! 
Nascent Iodine - Promotes detoxification, mental focus and thyroid health.
Smart Meter Cover -  Reduces Smart Meter radiation by 96%!  (See Video)

Report abuse

    Comments

    Your Comments
    Question   Razz  Sad   Evil  Exclaim  Smile  Redface  Biggrin  Surprised  Eek   Confused   Cool  LOL   Mad   Twisted  Rolleyes   Wink  Idea  Arrow  Neutral  Cry   Mr. Green

    Total 2 comments
    • Detergent

      Have we finally discovered Kurt Vonnegut’s “Ice Nine”? Sounds like it. I’ll just climb a small mountain and lie back and extend my middle finger and kiss it while extending it toward the cosmos.

    • huge_juan

      LOL, I don’t know why Uranus has a strong magnetic field, mine doesn’t.

    MOST RECENT
    Load more ...

    SignUp

    Login

    Newsletter

    Email this story
    Email this story

    If you really want to ban this commenter, please write down the reason:

    If you really want to disable all recommended stories, click on OK button. After that, you will be redirect to your options page.