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Solar System
Solar System
Solar System
Solar System
Solar System
Solar System
Solar System
Solar System
Solar System
Solar System
Solar System
Solar System
Solar System
Solar System
Solar System
Solar System
Solar System
Solar System
Solar System
Solar System
Solar System
Solar System
Solar System
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Solar System

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  • 1. The Solar System Earth Science 1st Semester
  • 2. • The sun is the central hub of a rotating wheel of planets, their moons, and many other smaller celestial objects, such as comets and asteroids. • The sun is estimated to contain 99.85% of the mass of our solar system. QuickTime™ and a decompressor are needed to see this picture.
  • 3. • The planets traveling outwards from the sun are as follows: Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune. • Pluto is no longer considered a planet. QuickTime™ and a decompressor are needed to see this picture.
  • 4. • Due to the sun’s gravity, all planets move in an elliptical orbit in the same direction around the sun. • The closer a planet is to the sun, the faster it travels in its orbit. QuickTime™ and a decompressor are needed to see this picture.
  • 5. The Planets: An Overview • The planets fall into two groups – the terrestrial planets, and the Jovian planets. QuickTime™ and a decompressor are needed to see this picture.
  • 6. • The terrestrial planets include Mercury, Venus, Earth, and Mars. • They are relatively small and rocky. • Since they are closer to the sun they are also known as the inner planets. QuickTime™ and a decompressor are needed to see this picture.
  • 7. • The Jovian planets include Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune. • They are huge planets made primarily of gas. • Since they are further from the sun, they are known as outer planets. QuickTime™ and a decompressor are needed to see this picture.
  • 8. • Size is the most notable difference between the terrestrial and Jovian planets. • Density, chemical makeup, and the rate of rotation are other ways in which the two groups of planets differ. QuickTime™ and a decompressor are needed to see this picture.
  • 9. • The planets have different densities because of their different chemical compositions. QuickTime™ and a decompressor are needed to see this picture.
  • 10. The Interiors of the Planets • The substances that make up the planets are divided into three groups based on their melting points. • Gases: Hydrogen and Helium – have melting points near absolute zero (-273 °C or 0 kelvin) • Rocks: made from compounds of silicates and metallic iron, both of which have melting points above 700°C.
  • 11. • Ices: Include ices made from compounds of ammonia, methane, carbon dioxide, and water. • These particular ices have intermediate melting points.
  • 12. • Terrestrial planets are dense and consist mostly of rocky and metallic substances. • They have very little gas and ice. QuickTime™ and a decompressor are needed to see this picture.
  • 13. • The Jovian planets are less dense because they contain: • Large amounts of gases like hydrogen and helium. • Ices made from water, ammonia, and methane. • The outer planets cores contain rocky and metallic materials.
  • 14. QuickTime™ and a decompressor are needed to see this picture.
  • 15. The Atmospheres of the Planets • A planet’s ability to hold onto an atmosphere depends on its mass and temperature. • Small, relatively warm planetary bodies, with small surface gravity cannot hold much gas. QuickTime™ and a decompressor are needed to see this picture.
  • 16. • Therefore, terrestrial planets have very thin atmospheres. • Jovian planets however, have very thick atmospheres composed of hydrogen, helium, methane and ammonia. • They are able to retain thick atmospheres due to their large mass, and low temperatures. QuickTime™ and a decompressor are needed to see this picture.
  • 17. Formation of the Solar System – Nebular Theory • Nebula are clouds of dust and gas in space. • These thin, gaseous clouds begin to rotate in space and collapse in upon themselves. • As they continue to contract, they begin to spin faster. QuickTime™ and a decompressor are needed to see this picture.
  • 18. • According to the nebular theory, the sun and planets formed from just such a rotating disk of dust and gases. • As the speed of rotation increased, the center of the disk began to flatten out and increase in temperature. • The sun eventually formed in this location. QuickTime™ and a decompressor are needed to see this picture.
  • 19. Planetesimals • Planets began to grow as solid bits of matter began to collide and clump together in a process known as accretion. • The colliding matter formed small irregularly shaped bodies known as planetesimals. QuickTime™ and a decompressor are needed to see this picture.
  • 20. • As the collisions increased, the planetesimals grew in size, eventually growing large enough to exert a gravitational pull on surrounding objects and pull them in. • In this fashion the planetesimals added more mass and grew into true planets. QuickTime™ and a decompressor are needed to see this picture.
  • 21. • In the inner solar system, only metals and rocks with high melting points and high densities could remain. • The sun is too hot for materials with low melting points to stay solid. • The sun does not attract items with low densities towards it. QuickTime™ and a decompressor are needed to see this picture.
  • 22. • Materials with low melting points and low densities (like gases) would be forced into the outer solar system due to the sun’s heat and the solar wind. • In the outer solar system, the colder temperatures allowed materials with low melting points to form up as ice. QuickTime™ and a decompressor are needed to see this picture.
  • 23. • The Jovian planets were able to form from accumulating solid bits of matter but also from large quantities of ice. • Eventually, the Jovian planets grew so large that they were able to attract even the lightest gases like hydrogen and helium. QuickTime™ and a decompressor are needed to see this picture.

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