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Scientists claim Uranus has that rotten egg smell

Posted: 10:06 PM, Apr 24, 2018
Updated: 2018-04-25 03:06:08Z

A global research team of NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California, using spectroscopes, have found hydrogen sulfide in the clouds or Uranus, NASA said on Tuesday. 

What is special about hydrogen sulfide is it is a common chemical on Earth humans like to avoid. Hydrogen sulfide is the same gas that rotten eggs emit. 

Yes, Uranus smells like rotten eggs. 

The presence of hydrogen sulfide has long been suspected on Uranus. NASA’s Voyager 2, which passed by the planet decades ago, detected the gas. But using Earth-based satellites, NASA has been able to confirm the presence of the gas. 

NASA said that finding hydrogen sulfide on Uranus is a striking difference compared to the other gas planets. Jupiter and Saturn have had ammonia detected in the clouds, but not hydrogen sulfide. 

“We’ve strongly suspected that hydrogen sulfide gas was influencing the millimeter and radio spectrum of Uranus for some time, but we were unable to attribute the absorption needed to identify it positively. Now, that part of the puzzle is falling into place as well,” Glenn Orton of NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory said. 

If there is one bit of good news, scientists said: It would be impossible for the hydrogen sulfide to overtake humans. 

"Suffocation and exposure in the negative 200 degrees Celsius [392 degrees Fahrenheit] atmosphere made of mostly hydrogen, helium and methane would take its toll long before the smell," said lead author Patrick Irwin of the University of Oxford, U.K.