Astronomers have been monitoring the temperature of Neptune for 17 years and found that it suddenly dropped and then rose sharply near the south pole. Scientists do not yet know the reason for that, SciTechDaily reports.
One year on Neptune lasts 165 Earth years. Seasons change about every 40 years.
In 2005, summer came to Neptune's southern hemisphere. From 2003 to 2018, the average global temperature of the planet decreased by 8 °C. An analysis of hundreds of thermal infrared images of Neptune taken during that period confirmed this.
This change is very unexpected. Scientists observed Neptune in early summer and expected temperatures to rise slowly, not fall.
But in the last two years of observations (2018-2020), astronomers have recorded a dramatic warming of the planet's south pole, with temperatures rising by 11 °C. It has never happened so fast on Neptune before.