All About Uranus

A cartoon of Uranus on its side, smiling and saying, I'm sideways!

What is Uranus like?

Uranus is made of water, methane, and ammonia fluids above a small rocky center. Its atmosphere is made of hydrogen and helium like Jupiter and Saturn, but it also has methane. The methane makes Uranus blue.

Uranus also has faint rings. The inner rings are narrow and dark. The outer rings are brightly colored and easier to see. Like Venus, Uranus rotates in the opposite direction as most other planets. And unlike any other planet, Uranus rotates on its side.


Uranus' Merit Badges

Click the planet badges to learn more about Uranus:


a merit badge with a purple ring in the center
a merit badge has bands of yellow and blue showing a general gas giant
a merit badge with an orange planet and a thick blue band above it
a merit badge with a planet and an arrow encircling it, showing rotation
a merit badge with a sun and an arrow encircling it, showing revolution around the sun
a merit badge with a vertical rounded arrow
a merit badge with a hand pointing to a circle in the sky
a merit badge with a horizontal arrow showing clockwise rotation
a merit badge with a simplified spacecraft made of a square and two rectangles

See all the planet badges.


What does Uranus look like?

A photo of a blue and purple Uranus surrounded by an orange vertical ring.

This picture shows Uranus surrounded by its four major rings and by 10 of its moons. This image has colors added to show the different altitudes and thicknesses of clouds in the atmosphere.

Green and blue areas show where the atmosphere is clear and sunlight can get through. The yellow and grey parts have thicker clouds. Orange and red colors mean very high clouds, similar to cirrus clouds on Earth.

A photo of a full side of Uranus showing bands of blue and white.

The Hubble Space Telescope took this picture of Uranus. You can see bands and a dark spot in Uranus' atmosphere.


For more information visit solarsystem.nasa.gov/planets/uranus.

article last updated July 7, 2016
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