Gas Giant

A gas giant (sometimes also known as a jovian planet after the planet Jupiter, or giant planet) is a large planet that is not primarily composed of rock or other solid matter. There are four gas giants in the Solar System: Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune. Many extrasolar gas giants have been identified orbiting other stars.

Planets above 10 Earth masses are termed giant planets. Lower-mass gassy planets are sometimes called "gas dwarfs".

Objects large enough to start deuterium fusion (above 13 Jupiter masses for solar composition) are called brown dwarfs and these occupy the mass range between that of large gas giant planets and the lowest mass stars. The 13 Jupiter mass (MJ) cutoff is a rule of thumb rather than something of precise physical significance. Larger objects will burn most of their deuterium and smaller ones will burn only a little, and the 13 MJ value is somewhere in between. The amount of deuterium burnt also depends not only on mass but on the composition of the planet, especially on the amount of helium and deuterium present. The Extrasolar Planets Encyclopaedia includes objects up to 25 Jupiter masses, and the Exoplanet Data Explorer up to 24 Jupiter masses.

Read more about Gas GiantDescription, Jupiter and Saturn, Uranus and Neptune, Extrasolar Gas Giants, Terminology

Other articles related to "gas giant, gas giants, gas, giant":

Finding Habitable Zone Planets and Moons - Discoveries in The Zone - Early Discoveries: Gas Giants and Potential Moons
... See also category Gas giant planets in the habitable zone Although the extrasolar planet 70 Virginis b (discovered in 1996) was initially nicknamed "Goldilocks" because it was thought to be. 16 Cygni Bb (discovered in 1996) is a large gas giant with an eccentric orbit, found to spend some of its time inside the habitable zone ... Gliese 876 b (discovered in 1998) and Gliese 876 c (discovered in 2001) are both gas giants discovered in the habitable zone around Gliese 876 ...
Gas Giant - Terminology
... The term gas giant was coined in 1952 by the science fiction writer James Blish ... planetary scientists typically use "rock", "gas", and "ice" as shorthands for classes of elements and compounds commonly found as planetary constituents, irrespective of what ... "ice" astronomers mean oxygen and carbon, by "rock" they mean silicon, and by "gas" they mean hydrogen and helium ...
Forerunners (The History Of The Galaxy) - History - The Orion Nebula
... nebula and found not only thousands of Forerunners in the local gas giant and their guiding intelligence, but also humans descended from the colonists of Earth's first ... These humans appear to worship the gas giant being as God, which also allows them to be reincarnated once they reach old age (i.e ... Unfortunately, the gas giant is slowly being depleted by ancient human-built biomechanical terraforming machines, who are mining a rare metal known ...
Atmospheric Beast - In Fiction
... the Sagan hypothesis of creatures living in the atmospheres of gas giants ... called the "Slylandro", who are native to a distant gas giant, living only within a certain air density ... that is said to have lived in the atmosphere of a gas giant ...
Definition Of planet - Ongoing Controversies - Extrasolar Planets and Brown Dwarfs
... perspective, however different their modes of formation, extrasolar giant planets and brown dwarfs are essentially the same." Burrows also claims that such stellar remnants as white dwarfs should not be ... The material difference between a low-mass star and a large gas giant is not clearcut apart from size and relative temperature, there is little to separate a gas giant like Jupiter from its host star ... to have formed from the "bottom up" from the accretion of dust and gas in orbit around the young star, and thus should have cores of silicates or ices ...

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