My project this year is based on the solar system. In my project I will discuss the theory behind the start of the solar system. I will also describe the sun and planets moving round it.

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My project this year is based on the solar system.  In my project I will discuss the theory behind the start of the solar system.  I will also describe the sun and planets moving round it.  Some planets can easily be seen at night but you need a powerful telescope to see others.  A lot of the findings in our solar system are obtained recently from the photographs sent be space probes like Voyager.  Findings have also been made by using powerful radio telescopes on earth.  I will conclude my project with what may be in store for us in the future.

Chapter 1

History of the Solar System

The region of the universe in which we live, the solar system, is one of many clusters of planets and stars in space.  Of the nine planets that orbit our nearby star, the sun, Earth is the only one known to support life.

Our Solar System lies in a particular region of the universe known as the Milky Way galaxy.  


The solar system cosists of the Sun, together with the planets, their satellites, and asteroid, meteoroids, and comets, all of which are travelling around the Sun in paths called orbits.  The word “solar” comes from the Latin word ‘sol,’ which means “sun.”

The Sun’s gravitational pull keeps the planets and other members of the solar system in orbit and stops them from travelling of into space.  The Sun also provides the heat and light in the solar system. The other members of the solar system shine only because they reflect sunlight. The Sun is a fairly typical star, not unlike many of those seen in the night sky.  

Astronomers are still not certain about the details of how the solar system came into being. However, most of them agree that the Sun and planets formed at about the same time, millions of years ago, from a cloud of gas and dust in space, called the “solar nebula.”  It is also possible that the planets were never a part of the hot Sun itself. They may have come from the remainder of an exploding star (supernova) that happened near the Sun.

The planetary orbits are elliptical in shape and all lie in one plane except Mercury and Pluto whose orbits are tilted at an orbit of 7°and 17°.  All the planets move the same direction. Asteroids and comets move in a completely different plane. Planets are recognised in the night sky because they shine with a steadier light than the twinkling stars.

The Sun rises and sets every day because the earth is turning on axis every 24 hours (23.93 hours). All the planets rotate, but at different speeds. The time Earth takes to go round the Sun is around 365 days which is known as a year.  But Pluto, the farthest planet from the Sun takes 248 years to go round while Mercury only takes 88 days.  Jupiter is over 300 times larger than the Earth. It only takes Jupiter 10 hours to spin once on its axis while it takes Earth 24 hours to spin. This means that Jupiter is spinning at a much greater speed than the Earth.

Mercury, Venus, Earth and Mars are sometimes grouped together as the inner or terrestrial planets. The other planets are called the outer planets. All the outer planets, except Pluto, are giants in size, compared with inner planets and are surrounded by rings of material.

Chapter 2

The Sun

The Sun is a star. Along with the other planets of the solar system, the earth moves around the Sun, trapped in orbit by the laws of gravity from the Sun. The Sun provides light and heat, which sustains all life on Earth. The Sun is a ball of glowing gases, mostly hydrogen and a little helium, along with traces of other elements.

Warning: the Sun’s light and HEAT are so strong that they can HURT your eyes and damage theM PERMANENTLY. You must Never look directly AT the Sun with the naked EYE and CERTAINLY never through a telescope!!!

The Sun contains nearly all the material in the solar system.  The Sun is over one thousand times larger than the largest planet, Jupiter, which in turn is more than three hundred times heavier than the Earth.

The Sun’s gravity is about thirty times more than the Earth’s gravity. The temperature of the surface of the Sun is about 6000°C and the temperature at the centre is more than 14 million °C. Due to this high temperature even metals such as iron are present in gaseous form.

The Sun turns on its axis and takes over 24 days for one revolution at equator but take a few days longer away from the equator which means the different parts of the Sun move at different speeds.


The Sun spots are large markings which appear on the Sun’s surface from time to time. They look dark because they are thousands of degrees cooler than the surrounding areas.


Solar flares are bright areas which sometimes appear near Sun spots. These are eruptions of vast quantities of materials into space. They sometimes measure hundreds of thousands of miles across.

The Sun is one of thousands of millions of stars making up our galaxy, the Milky Way. The Sun, together with its family of planets, asteroid, comets, and so on, is slowly moving along a vast orbit around the centre of the galaxy.  It lies about 30,000 light years from the centre of the galaxy.  It takes the Sun 225 million years to complete one revolution.

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Tornadoes have been found on the Sun – almost as big as the Earth and with winds of up to three hundred thousand miles per hour. It is thought they may be a cause of magnetic storms which can disrupt power supplies and computers on Earth.

Magnetic storms are expected to peak in the year 2000 because of a large number of spots on the Sun’s surface.  But the “Soho” satellite which found the the tornadoes may be able to warn of the worst of the storms.


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This is a well structured and researched report. 1. The sources of information need to be referenced. 2. The report could benefit from standardizing the information given for each planet. 3. The conclusion is very brief and could do with more detail. 4. The report does not have an Aim. ****