I am aware of this, because I keep tracking news of space science. As an amateur of course. I started one day, when I realized that I can't remember order of the planets of our Solar system. It touched me, because they're closest neighbors of the Earth, they're so interesting! I thought: I have read nice books about space in my childhood, and where this all now? So from that point I began to learn, I do it for 11 years already. Almost 10 of them was spent in awaiting of New Horizons reaching Pluto-Charon system. Now, when amazing pictures and intriguing data from this probe become part of our knowledge, there's new challenges, including returning to Uranus. We'll have to wait much longer, because Uranus Orbiter is on planning stage. So I decided to give free rein to my imagination and made my first space artwork. There is a view from crumpled surface of Miranda on distant Sun and Uranus with shining aurora polaris, faint ring system, smaller moons Mab, Belinda and Portia, stars (take a look on HD wallpaper version to see more) and small point of the spacecraft. What's Miranda? It's one of major moons (nearly 500 km) of Uranus, deformed by some ancient catastrophe. It's unusual and nice. Well-known motivating short movie Wanderers contain a scene with astronaut jumping from multikilometer cliff on Miranda.
I sacrificed by full realism for candy-box beauty:
- - Sunlight is seen as white light in space. Sun appears as yellowish only on the surface of Earth, because part of blue component scatter in the atmosphere (that's why skies are blue). Yet I depicted the Sun as orange (!!!), symbolically designating warm light of a distant home.
- From Miranda and other satellites (except smallest ones) the rings of Uranus are seen almost laterally (from the edge), while I positioned them under bigger angle so they can be seen better.
- On the shots of Voyager II Uranus lacks of surface features and looks like giant shadeless ball. Based on data from Hubble and processed (using modern technology images), I hoped for impermanence of such a calmness and added some clouds.
- Uranus mostly has type-B auroras (similar to SAR ARC on Earth). The rings of Uranus sweep away much of the particles in the area which is supposed to be the plasmasphere. Therefore there is only a small plasmasphere containing trapped particles, and a lot less plasma left for aurora, while on my picture you can see bright polar lights, classy even on Earth standards. But inconvergence of polar light with the planet's rotation pole is reliable, because there's great angle between magnetic and rotation poles of Uranus.
- Stars aren't real here, they're placed just randomly.
- Finally, Miranda's surface isn't such saturated. It's closer to pale color of the Moon.
Shortly speaking, I just tried to make nice picture without violating scientifical facts too much.
Also, this work is a little dedication to hard working enthusiasts of space explorations like Carolyn Porco, Rob Zubrin, Boris Chertok, Alexander Basilevsky, Leonid Ksanfomaliti, Bruce Murray, Alan Stern, Revmira Pryadchenko, Ed Stone, Gary Flandro, Brad Smith and many others.
Thanks to astrophysicist Sergey Popov and astronomer Jury Solomonov for blitz answers which kept me from violating scientifical facts too much.
You can dream up a little, looking at the picture and listening track Cisfinitum - Landschaft I.
Or you can stop dreaming and take more sceptic look on more reliable version.
Date: August 2016.