Our Solar System

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Information about Our Solar System

Published on January 16, 2008

Author: Reaa

Source: authorstream.com

Our Solar System:  Our Solar System Dorian Janney After School Astronomy Clubs The Sun:  The Sun solar flare sun spots solar wind MERCURY:  MERCURY Mercury, the planet nearest the Sun, is the second smallest planet in our solar system. It is only slightly larger than the Earth's moon. The surface is covered with craters. This tiny planet does not have any rings or moons. evidence of craters VENUS:  VENUS impact craters lava flows Venus is one of the brightest objects in our sky, so it is clearly visible to the naked eye. It can be tricky to spot because it is always near the Sun. It rises and sets with the Sun each day. Ancient civilizations believed Venus was actually two different objects, so they called the one that rose the Morning Star, and the one that set the Evening Star. EARTH and MOON:  EARTH and MOON What similarities and differences do you notice between the Earth and the Moon? Why do they have such different surface features? MARS:  MARS Olympus Mons is the largest volcano in our solar system! Martian crater Mars is very bright, which makes it easy to spot in the night sky. It was named after the Roman god of war because its reddish color reminded the people of blood. Although people have never landed on Mars, we have sent robotic explorers there. ASTEROID BELT:  ASTEROID BELT Most asteroids can be found in the Asteroid Belt, which is located between Mars and Jupiter. Asteroids are rocky and metallic objects that orbit the Sun, but are too small to be considered planets. They are known as minor planets. Asteroids range in size from Ceres, which has a diameter of about 1000 km, down to the size of pebbles. JUPITER:  JUPITER Here are a few of Jupiter’s moons Jupiter, the fifth planet from the Sun, is the largest planet in our solar system. Jupiter is so big that over 1,000 planets the size of Earth could fit into it. It has over 60 moons and 2 rings.  Can life exist on Jupiter's moon, Europa? The “Great Red Spot” Is actually a huge Storm system! SATURN:  SATURN Saturn, the sixth planet from the Sun, is the second largest planet in our solar system. It is often called the ringed planet because many rings of dust and rocks surround it. Saturn also has over 31 moons. Some of Saturn’s rings Saturn with some of its moons Titan is a moon of Saturn that may have some Conditions necessary for life! The picture on the right shows an artist’s drawing of how Titan might have looked when the Cassini-Huygen’s probe dropped into its atmosphere in Dec., 2004. URANUS:  URANUS Black rings Uranus is a very unusual planet because it sits on its side with north and south poles sticking out the sides. It rotates around this axis, making it look like a ball rolling around in a circle around the Sun. some of Uranus’s moons NEPTUNE:  NEPTUNE Tiny Dark Moon Neptune, usually the eighth planet from the Sun, is a very cold place. Occasionally, Pluto crosses Neptune’s orbit and becomes the eight planet. Its bluish color comes from its atmosphere of methane gas. PLUTO :  PLUTO Clearest view to date Of Pluto and Charon Pluto, usually the ninth planet from the Sun, is the smallest planet in our solar system. Some scientists believe that Pluto once was one of Neptune’s moons, and that it pulled out away from Neptune and made its own orbit. COMETS:  COMETS Comet Halley in 1910 Comets are sometimes called dirty snowballs or "icy mudballs". They are a mixture of ices (both water and frozen gases) and dust that for some reason didn't get incorporated into planets when the solar system was formed. This makes them very interesting as samples of the early history of the solar system. Comets have elliptical orbits. When we see a comet, we are seeing the tail of the comet as comes close to the Sun. Credits include:  Credits include http://kids.nineplanets.org/title.htm http://pds.jpl.nasa.gov/planets/ http://library.thinkquest.org/J0112188/pluto.htm

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