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MERCURYMercury, the planet nearest the Sun, is the smallest planet in our solar system.It is only slightly larger than the Earths moon. The surface is covered with craters.This tiny planet does not have any rings or moons.evidence ofcraters
VENUSimpact craterslava flowsVenus 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 alwaysnear the Sun.It rises and sets with the Sun each day.Ancient civilizations believed Venus wasactually two different objects,so they called the one that rose theMorning Star, and the one that setthe Evening Star.
EARTH and MOONWhat similarities anddifferences do you noticebetween the Earth and theMoon?Why do they have suchdifferent surface features?
MARSOlympus Monsis the largestvolcano in oursolar system!Martian craterMars is very bright, which makes it easy to spot in the night sky. It was named afterthe Roman god of war because its reddish color reminded the people of blood.Although people havenever landed on Mars,we have sent roboticexplorers there.
ASTEROID BELTMost asteroids can be found in the Asteroid Belt, which is located betweenMars 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.
JUPITERHere are a few of Jupiter’s moonsJupiter, 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 Jupiters moon, Europa?The “Great Red Spot”Is actually a hugeStorm system!
SATURNSaturn, 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 ringsSaturn with some ofits moonsTitan is a moon of Saturn that may have someConditions necessary for life! The picture onthe right shows an artist’s drawing of how Titanmight have looked when the Cassini-Huygen’sprobe dropped into its atmosphere in Dec., 2004.
URANUSBlack ringsUranus is a very unusual planet because it sits on its side with north and southpoles sticking out the sides. It rotates around this axis, making it look like a ballrolling around in a circle around the Sun.some of Uranus’s moons
NEPTUNETiny Dark MoonNeptune, 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.
PLUTOClearest view to dateOf Pluto and CharonPluto, before is the ninth planet from the Sun, it is the smallest planet in our solar systemSome scientists believe that Pluto once was one of Neptune’s moons, and that itpulled out away from Neptune and made its own orbit.
COMETSComet Halley in 1910Comets are sometimes called dirty snowballs or "icy mudballs".They are a mixture of ices (both water and frozen gases) and dust that forsome reason didnt 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 haveelliptical orbits.When we see a comet, weare seeing the tail of the cometas comes close to the Sun.