They are all gaseous planets and represent half the number of planets in the solar system. The disk eventually becomes a big enough body that it may end up having a spherical shape. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License. Because the forces of gravity are so strong, rings are not likely to occur. And More…, Episode 695: Q&A 130: Does the Dark Forest Explain the Fermi Paradox? I say right now, because it’s possible that Mercury has had rings in the past, and it could have them again in the future. No. For a few million years this crushed asteroid would appear as a ring around Mercury, until the chunks finally fell down onto the planet. Since it the innermost planet in the solar system, it also means that it revolves around the sun in the shortest time (89.97 days) compared to the other planets. Follow us on Twitter: @universetoday The Planet Mercury does not have any rings, or any moons. A year on Mercury lasts 88 Earth days. Altogether, 491 frames were taken … Continue Reading. Wallace Arthur is an evolutionary biologist and emeritus professor of Zoology at the National University of Ireland, Galway. Although moons are a common feature in our Solar System, Mercury does not have any moons. Does planet Mercury have rings? In the 1970s, astronomers believed Mercury might have a moon based on large amounts of ultraviolet radiation detected by a National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) spacecraft. A moon may occur from a disk of materials orbiting a planet. Instagram –, Team: Fraser Cain – @fcain / [email protected] So what about Mercury? Scientists surmise that the most likely reason for this is due to the strong gravitational pull of the sun on the planet. Web. We also know that some of Saturn’s moons, like Enceladus, are continuing to spew fresh material into the rings. There seems to be some … Only the gas planets, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune have rings and only those of Saturn are highly visible. Scientists think that Saturn’s rings come from an icy object or moon that was crushed under Saturn’s gravity, becoming its rings., Audio Podcast version: And More…, Episode 697: Interview: Theoretical Physicist Dr. Peter Woit, Episode 696: Open Space 94: Is It Realistic to Declare a "Free Mars"? Only the gas planets, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune have rings and only those of Saturn are highly visible. Celestial Collisions; Capturing Asteroids; Trapped Comets; The Sun’s Gravity; Related Articles; Celestial Collisions. Mercury is the smallest planet in our solar system. [/caption] Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune are the four planets in our solar system that have rings. For decades, researchers believed that Saturn was the only planet with rings, but … Most people associate planetary rings with Saturn because its rings are more visible and colorful compared to the other planets. In fact, ice can’t exist closer to the Sun than the asteroid belt, unless it’s hidden in shadow, or protected by an atmosphere like we have on Earth. As of 2014, no moons, rings or signs of life have been seen on Mercury, according to NASA. Both Earth and Venus have collected co-orbiting dust rings, as the planets have shepherded the particles with powerful gravitational tugs. If you’d like more information on Mercury, check out NASA’s Solar System Exploration Guide, and here’s a link to NASA’s MESSENGER Misson Page. And More…, Episode 698: Open Space 95: Would SpaceX Have Survived without NASA? Mercury’s atmosphere is constantly shifting, is consistently stripped and blown away by solar winds, and it is constantly replenishing itself. One day on Mercury is about as long at 176 days on Earth. Here’s an article about the Martian moon Phobos might only have 10 million years to live, and here’s an article about what Saturn’s rings are made of. 4 Dec. 2012, Astronomy Cast: Web. We have written many stories about rings here on Universe Today. Besides Mercury, Venus is the only other planet in the solar system that does not have a moon or rings. Post was not sent - check your email addresses! RSS:, What Fraser's Watching Playlist: How Many Moons Does Mercury Have? Mercury doesn’t have any moons, and there aren’t many asteroids that might interact with it, so it might never get a ring – but maybe one day.

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