The two planets couldn’t be more different. Earth is a small, rocky planet with a thin atmosphere. Jupiter is a huge gas planet with a dense atmosphere. Earth has one moon, while Jupiter has 67 moons. Earth’s temperature ranges from -128 degrees F to 212 degrees F, while Jupiter’s temperature ranges from -292 degrees F to 24 degrees F. Despite their differences, the two planets are both fascinating places to explore. NASA’s Juno spacecraft is currently orbiting Jupiter and gathering data about its climate, atmosphere, and magnetic field. I can’t wait to see what else we learn about this giant gas planet!
What is Earth?
Earth is the third planet from the Sun and the fifth largest in the solar system. Earth is the only planet in the solar system with liquid water on its surface. Earth’s atmosphere is made up of 78% nitrogen, 21% oxygen, and 1% other gases, including water vapor, carbon dioxide, and ozone. The average temperature on Earth’s surface is 61 degrees Fahrenheit. Earth has one natural satellite, the Moon. Earth rotates on its axis once every 24 hours and orbits around the Sun once every 365 days.
What is Jupiter?
- Jupiter is the fifth planet from the sun and the largest in the solar system. It is a gas giant with a mass one-thousandth that of the sun, but two-and-a-half times that of all the other planets in the solar system combined. Jupiter has a diameter of almost 143,000 kilometers, making it more than eleven times the size of Earth.
- The planet is mostly composed of hydrogen and helium. Jupiter has a strong magnetic field and is home to sixty-four moons, including the largest moon in the solar system, Ganymede. Jupiter was first observed by the ancients and is named after the Roman king of the gods. Jupiter is often referred to as a failed star because it is made of the same material as the sun but did not have enough mass to fuse hydrogen into helium.
- The planet’s atmosphere is turbulent and constantly changing, with distinctive features such as the Great Red Spot. Jupiter’s rapid rotation makes it flatten at the poles and bulge at the equator. Jupiter’s gravity also affects other objects in space, most notably planets in the asteroid belt. Jupiter will eventually become a red giant and then slowly fade away over billions of years.
Difference between Earth and Jupiter
- Earth and Jupiter are both giant planets that formed early in the history of the solar system. However, there are some significant differences between them. For one, Earth is much smaller than Jupiter.
- Earth’s diameter is about 12,700 kilometers, while Jupiter’s is almost 11 times larger at 142,800 kilometers. Additionally, Earth has a solid surface made of rock and debris, while Jupiter is mostly composed of gas and dust.
- This difference in composition leads to very different atmospheres on the two planets. Earth’s atmosphere is relatively thin and contains mostly nitrogen and oxygen, while Jupiter’s atmosphere is much thicker and contains hydrogen and helium.
- Finally, Earth has only one large moon, while Jupiter has dozens of small moons orbiting around it. These differences show that Earth and Jupiter are two very different planets.
Jupiter is much larger than Earth, with a diameter of over 11 times that of our planet. In addition to its size, Jupiter’s atmosphere is also much thicker. The gas giant has no solid surface like Earth does; the bottom of its atmosphere gradually transitions into a layer of hot liquid hydrogen and helium. This makes it difficult (though not impossible) for spacecraft to orbit or land on Jupiter. Despite these differences, there are some similarities between Earth and Jupiter. Both planets have a magnetic field that protects them from harmful radiation from the sun. Additionally, both planets have an ionosphere, which is made up of charged particles that surround the planet and interact with the magnetic field.