Last month, NASA put its James Webb Space Telescope to use to get a closer look at the Milky Way galaxy. The space agency has returned with new images – this time, setting its sights on the ice planet Uranus.
The seventh planet from the Sun is known to have a particularly unique look due to its icy blue color, which appears saturated even though Uranus is comprised of gas. To capture the image, scientists used the telescope’s Near-Infrared Camera (NIRCam), allowing them to get a clear view of the planet’s inner and outer rings, including the typically faint Zeta ring.
The rings of Uranus are comprised of fragmented pieces of former moons and dust. The photo also shows nine of the 27 moons of Uranus, a few of which are located within the ring system, and the polar cap, a region of ice.
“One of the most striking of these is the planet’s seasonal north polar cloud cap,” NASA said. “Compared to the Webb image from earlier this year, some details of the cap are easier to see in these newer images. These include the bright, white, inner cap and the dark lane in the bottom of the polar cap, toward the lower latitudes.”
Check out NASA’s latest photo of Uranus captured by the James Webb Space Telescope above.
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