Space Is Cool
Our Solar SystemMercurys Facts:
Diameter: 4,880 km
Distance from the Sun: 57,910,000 km.
Length of year 88 Earth days
Surface temperature: midday 420 degrees C.
Mercury is the greek god of Roman Mythology. Mercury is a purpleish color. It is filled with craters and rocks. Mercury has no moons and no atmosphere. On Earth we can look through a telescope, but can not see anything on its surface.
Diameter: 12,100 km
Distance from the Sun: 108,000,000 km.
Length of year 225 Earth days
Surface temperature: midday 430-480 degrees C.
Venus has usually been called Earths sister planet because of its similar size and proximity to Earth. The surface of Venus is mostly hidden. Venus could be the brightest thing in the sky besides the sun and moon. Since its orbit is inside that of the earth we can only see Venus if we look in the direction of the Sun. This bright planet (Venus) is known as during the few hours before sunset as "The Evening Star," or before sunrise Venus is called "The Morning Star." The orange-brown image of Venus is a false color.
Diameter: 12,760 km
Distance from the Sun: 190,000,000 km.
Length of year 365 Earth days
Surface temperature: midday 22 degrees C.
Earth is the largest and the densest rocky planet, which was created about 4.5 billion years ago. The Earths interior is composed of mostly iron and oxygen. Also combined with various elements into different mineral forms. Earth is divided by four layers which is typical of rocky planets. Earth has a unique surface from the other planets because it is the only one which has liquid water in such large quanities.
Diameter: 6,670 km
Distance from the Sun: 228,000,000 km.
Length of year 687 Earth days
Surface temperature: midday -23 degrees C.
Moons: Phobos and Deimos
Mars is the red planet named after a Roman God of war. It is the fourth planet from the sun. It has always been easy to see so we dont know who discovered Mars. You can see it because of its red color. Mars is an Earth like planet because Giovanni Schiaaparelli thought there were many water canals on Mars.
Mars has many geological characteristics. For one thing, it has the largest volcanic mountain, Olympus Mons (27 km high and 600 km across), in the solar system.
Mars has two small moons, which are Phobos and Deimos. Nobody knows how the two small moons formed. They could be asteroids snarled by Mars gravity.
Diameter: 143,760 km
Distance from the Sun: 778,000,000 km.
Length of year 11.9 Earth years
Surface temperature: midday -240 degrees C.
Jupiter has an immense, complex atmosphere, with lightning and swirls of huge storm systems. The Great Red Spot is a giant storm that has existed for more than 100 years, and perhaps longer, as the great astronomer Galileo Galilei reported seeing a similar structure almost 380 years ago!
Jupiter has sixteen different moons and several rings. You could even call it a "mini solar system." Some moons are icy and some are rocky. Some are cratered, and some are amazingly smooth.
Diameter: 120,420 km
Distance from the Sun: 1,427,000,000 km.
Length of year 29.5 Earth years
Surface temperature: midday-300 degrees C.
Moons: Mimas, Enceladus, Tethys, Dione, Rhea, Titan, Hyperion, Iapetus, and Phoebe
Saturn is made mainly of hydrogen and helium. It has no definate surface. It is surrounded by seven rings made up of ice and dust particles.
Diameter: 51,120 km
Distance from the Sun: 2,869,000,000 km.
Length of year 84 Earth years
Surface temperature: midday -410 degrees C.
Moons: Miranda, Ariel, Umbriel, Titania, and Oberon
Uranus was discovered in 1781.Its rings were not discovered until nearly 200 years later.Uranus is made up of rock, water, methane and ammonia. Its atmosphere is made up of hydrogen and helium. Uranus spins on an axis at right angles to the other planets.
Diameter: 49,538 km
Distance from the Sun: 4,497,000,000 km.
Length of year 165 Earth years
Surface temperature: midday -410 degrees C.
Moons: Naiad, Thalassa, Despina, Galatea, Larissa, Proteus, Triton, and Nereid
Neptune is the eighth planet away from the Sun. Neptune was located through mathematical predictions instead, of being through regular observations of the sky. This planet was discovered in 1846. 17 days later its largest moon called Triton was discovered. Neptune orbits the sun once in every 165 Earth years. Neptunes rotational axis is tilted 30 degrees to the plane of its orbit around the sun. The winds on Neptune are over 2,400 km (1,500) miles per hour. In 1989 Voyager 2s flyby, there was a large oval dark spot in Neptunes hemisphere.
Diameter: 2,280 km
Distance from the Sun: 5,913,000,000 km.
Length of year 249 Earth years
Surface temperature: midday -446 degrees C.
Pluto was discovered in 1930. It is the outermost planet in the solar system most of the time but its path cuts across Neptune's making Neptune the farthest planet for a time. The planet is made up of frozen water and methane.
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