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Space Facts

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by

Woodford Chestnut

on 18 May 2015

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Transcript of Space Facts

Earth
Mars
Mercury
Saturn
Space Facts
Mercury is the closest planet to the Sun and due to its proximity it is not easily seen except during twilight. For every two orbits of the Sun, Mercury completes three rotations about its axis and up until 1965 it was thought that the same side of Mercury constantly faced the Sun. Thirteen times a century Mercury can be observed from the Earth passing across the face of the Sun in an event called a transit, the next will occur on the 9th May 2016.
Mass: 330,104,000,000,000 billion kg (0.055 x Earth)
Equatorial Diameter: 4,879
Polar Diameter: 4,879
Equatorial Circumference: 15,329 km
Known Moons: none
Notable Moons: none
Orbit Distance: 57,909,227 km (0.39 AU)
Orbit Period: 87.97 Earth days
Surface Temperature: -173 to 427°C
First Record: 14th century BC
Recorded By: Assyrian astronomers
A year on Mercury is just 88 days long:
One solar day (the time from noon to noon on the planet’s surface) on Mercury lasts the equivalent of 176 Earth days while the sidereal day (the time for 1 rotation in relation to a fixed point) lasts 59 Earth days. Mercury is nearly tidally locked to the Sun and over time this has slowed the rotation of the planet to almost match its orbit around the Sun. Mercury also has the highest orbital eccentricity of all the planets with its distance from the Sun ranging from 46 to 70 million km.
Mars is the fourth planet from the Sun. Named after the Roman god of war, and often described as the “Red Planet” due to its reddish appearance. Mars is a terrestrial planet with a thin atmosphere composed primarily of carbon dioxide.
Mass: 641,693,000,000,000 billion kg (0.107 x Earth)
Equatorial Diameter: 6,805
Polar Diameter: 6,755
Equatorial Circumference: 21,297 km
Known Moons: 2
Notable Moons: Phobos & Deimos
Orbit Distance: 227,943,824 km (1.38 AU)
Orbit Period: 686.98 Earth days (1.88 Earth years)
Surface Temperature: -87 to -5 °C
First Record: 2nd millennium BC
Recorded By: Egyptian astronomers
Mars and Earth have approximately the same landmass:
Even though Mars has only 15% of the Earth’s volume and just over 10% of the Earth’s mass, around two thirds of the Earth’s surface is covered in water. Martian surface gravity is only 37% of the Earth’s (meaning you could leap nearly three times higher on Mars).
Earth is the third planet from the Sun and is the largest of the terrestrial planets. The Earth is the only planet in our solar system not to be named after a Greek or Roman deity. The Earth was formed approximately 4.54 billion years ago and is the only known planet to support life.
Mass: 5,972,190,000,000,000 billion kg
Equatorial Diameter: 12,756 km
Polar Diameter: 12,714 km
Equatorial Circumference: 40,030 km
Known Moons: 1
Notable Moons: The Moon
Orbit Distance: 149,598,262 km (1 AU)
Orbit Period: 365.26 Earth days
Surface Temperature: -88 to 58°C
The Earth’s rotation is gradually slowing:
This deceleration is happening almost imperceptibly, at approximately 17 milliseconds per hundred years, although the rate at which it occurs is not perfectly uniform. This has the effect of lengthening our days, but it happens so slowly that it could be as much as 140 million years before the length of a day will have increased to 25 hours.
Saturn is the sixth planet from the Sun and the most distant that can be seen with the naked eye. It is best known for its fabulous ring system that was discovered in 1610 by the astronomer Galileo Galilei.
Mass: 568,319,000,000,000,000 billion kg (95.16 x Earth)
Equatorial Diameter: 120,536 km
Polar Diameter: 108,728 km
Equatorial Circumference: 365,882 km
Known Moons: 62
Notable Moons: Titan, Rhea & Enceladus more info
Known Rings: 30+ (7 Groups)
Orbit Distance: 1,426,666,422 km (9.58 AU)
Orbit Period: 10,755.70 Earth days (29.45 Earth years)
Surface Temperature: -139 °C
First Record: 8th century BC
Recorded By: Assyrians
Saturn can be seen with the naked eye:
It is the fifth brightest object in the solar system and is also easily studied through binoculars or a small telescope.
Sun
The Sun or Sol, is the star at the centre of our solar system and is responsible for the Earth’s climate and weather. The Sun is an almost perfect sphere with a difference of just 10km in diameter between the poles and the equator. The average radius of the Sun is 695,508 km (109.2 x that of the Earth) of which 20–25% is the core.
Age: 4.6 Billion Years
Type: Yellow Dwarf (G2V)
Diameter: 1,392,684 km
Circumference at Equator: 4,370,005.6 km
Mass: 1,989,100,000,000,000,000,000 billion kg (333,060 x Earth)
Surface Temperature: 5500 °C
One million Earths could fit inside the Sun:
If a hollow Sun was filled up with spherical Earths then around 960,000 would fit inside. On the other hand if these Earths were squished inside with no wasted space then around 1,300,000 would fit inside. The Sun’s surface area is 11,990 times that of the Earth’s.
By Mia
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