Planets' internal structures

Planets' internal structures

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Credit: CHRISTIAN DARKIN/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Planets' internal structures, and Pluto, computer artwork. Mercury, Mars and Venus consist of a large iron core (spherical), surrounded by a thick silicate mantle (yellow) covered in a surface crust. Earth consists of an inner core of solid iron and nickel (yellow) and a molten outer core (orange), surrounded by a mantle of highly viscous liquid (brown) covered by a surface crust. Jupiter and Saturn consist of a core of rock (spherical) surrounded by ice (mat grey). This is surrounded by a layer of liquid metallic hydrogen (grey) and liquid normal hydrogen (blue). Uranus and Neptune have a core of rock (spherical) surrounded by ice and liquid hydrogen (blue). Pluto has a dense rocky core (grey) surrounded by ice (black).

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