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The Solar System.

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The Solar System The Solar System consists of o The Sun o 9 Planets o 65 Moons o Asteroids o Comets (less than 1,000 recorded, possibly more than a trillion trapped beyond Pluto) o Dust The Sun is the largest thing in the Solar System, with over 1,000 times the mass of everything else added together. It's the Sun's huge gravity that keeps all of the nine planets, their moons, the asteroids, the comets, and the dust between the planets all orbiting the Sun. It would take more than 100 Earths placed side-by-side to go from one edge of the Sun to the other. The Sun is a star, and shines because it generates light and heat by nuclear reactions in its core. The planets are much smaller than the Sun and shine by reflecting the Sun's light. ...read more.


A few asteroids move towards the Sun closer. None of the asteroids have atmospheres. They are also known as planetoids or minor planets. The asteroid belt is a doughnut-shaped area of asteroids orbiting the Sun between the orbits of Mars and Jupiter. Most asteroids orbit from between 300 million to 600 million km from the Sun. The asteroids in the asteroid belt have a slightly oval orbit. The time for one revolution around the Sun varies from about three to six Earth years. The strong gravitational force of the planet Jupiter directs the asteroid belt, pulling the asteroids away from the Sun, keeping them from colliding into the inner planets. On the right, is a diagram of the asteroid belt. There are about 40,000 known asteroids that are over 1 km in diameter in the asteroid belt. ...read more.


Comets are only visible when they're near the sun in their orbits. A cross section of a comet is shown on the right. Comets orbit the Sun in orbits. Their speed increases greatly when they are near the Sun and slows down at the far sides of the orbit. Since the comet is light, only when it is near the Sun (and is it vaporizing), comets are dark (virtually invisible) throughout most of their orbit. The solar wind pushes the tail away from the Sun. Some comets crash into the Sun or get so close that they burn up; these comets are called sungrazers. There is a new and very controversial theory that comets are constantly bombarding the Earth. These "cosmic snowballs" have (possibly) been seen by the visible imaging system of the Polar Satellite. In theory, these frozen comets vaporize in the atmosphere, adding water vapour to the environment. The nine Planets (profiles) in order of distance from the Sun ...read more.

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