The Planet Venus – Planets In Our Solar System

Planet Venus

The Planet Venus - Planets In Our Solar SystemThe Planet Venus is the second planet in the solar system, in between Mercury and Venus. The size and structure of the planet are similar to the Earth. However, the planet possesses a lethal atmosphere. The planet records the highest temperature in the solar system, due to the high level of greenhouse gases in its atmosphere. Apart from this, the pressure on the planet’s surface would crush a person.

  • Orbit: 225 Earth days
  • Diameter: 7,521 miles (12, 104 km)
  • Day: 241 Earth days

The planet Venus is named after the Roman goddess of beauty and love. It is the only planet named after a female deity. This may be due to the fact that shines the brightest among the planets known to the ancient astronomers.

In ancient times, Venus was thought as two different stars, namely the morning and the evening star. As a result of being the brightest object in the sky after the sun and the moon, Venus has given rise to many UFO reports.

The Surface

The surface of the planet Venus is extremely dry. Ultraviolet rays from the sun evaporated the water on the planet during its evolution. Presently as a result of its atmosphere, there is no liquid water present on the planet.  Round two-thirds of the surface of the planet are covered by plains married with volcanoes hat are still active. Lava flow carves canals that are more than 3,000 miles in length, making them the longest among the other known planets.

One-third of the Venus landscape is covered by six mountainous regions. One of the mountain ranges is called Maxwell and is 540 miles long and 7 miles high. Apart from this, the planet also has surface features that are completely different from Earth. The planet has coronae (crowns) ranging from 95 miles to 360 miles. Scientists theorise that hot material underneath the crust rises up and warp the land surface. It also has tiles (tesserae) that have valleys and ridges in different directions.

Venus and Earth are considered to be twin planets as a result of their similarities in size, composition, mass, gravity and density. Another similarity is the magnetic field generate by the planet. As a result of its slow rotation speed, the metal core of the planet can generate a magnetic field.

Venus rotates in the opposite direction when compared to most other planets. The result is that on Venus, the sun sets in the east and rises in the west.

The Planet Mercury – Planets In Our Solar System

Planet Mercury

The Planet Mercury - Planets In Our Solar SystemThe Planet Mercury is the closest planet to the Sun. With virtually no atmosphere, the planet has some really harsh conditions with temperatures rising to 840 degrees Fahrenheit during daytime and fall to hundreds of degrees on the negative scale during night. Mercury has almost no atmosphere that can absorb meteor impacts and hence, its surface is strewn with craters.

  • Orbit: 88 Earth Days
  • Diameter:3,031 miles (4,878 km)
  • Day:6 Earth days

The present name given to the planet Mercury is that of the Roman messenger god. This is due to the fact that it circles the sun faster than the other planets. The planet has been named differently by different civilisations. The Sumerians knew about this planet around 5,000 years ago and they associated it with their god writing, Nabu. Mercury is known as a morning star as well as an evening star. However, Greek astronomers knew that both names referred to the same astronomical body.

Smallest Planet

Mercury is the smallest of all planets. Physically, it is only slightly bigger than Earth’s moon. Due to the absence of a significant atmosphere, the planet faces some of the worst temperatures in the solar system and also is hit by asteroids and meteors. Around 4 billion years ago, Mercury was struck by an asteroid that was roughly 60 miles. The impact was equal to the explosion of a trillion one megaton bombs. The resulting crater is today known as Caloris Basin. It is believed that a similar impact may have resulted in the odd spin that the planet follows presently.

Despite being the closest to the sun, water ice has been discovered in craters around its north pole. Certain regions may be permanently shaded from the sun’s heat aiding in the formation of water ice. The southern orbit has also contained ice, but this has not been validated by scientists yet.

The planet Mercury is the second most dense planet after Earth. It is a core of around 2,200 to 2,400 miles in width. The outer shell of the planet is only 300 – 400 miles thick. This fact is a mystery for scientists till date.

It was recently discovered that the planet Mercury possessed a magnetic field. Due to its slow rotation speed (59 Earth days), the planet was not expected to possess one. The presence of such a magnetic field suggests that its core may still be molten, although solar winds may dampen some of the magnetic field emanating from the planet.

 

 

Planets In Our Solar System

Planets In Our Solar System

Planets In Our Solar System - (Planets In Our Solar System)Planets in Our Solar System, A solar system is essentially a star and the objects that orbit around it. Our solar system consists of the Sun in the centre around which eight planets, a dwarf planet and some asteroids revolve. Our solar system is in an outward portion of the Milky Way galaxy. Let’s have a look at the planets in our solar system.

The planets in our solar system were discovered after astronomers followed moving points of light among the stars. Mercury, Venus, Jupiter, Mars and Saturn were discovered in a similar manner, while Neptune, Uranus, Pluto, the Asteroid Belt and the moons of many planets were observed only after the telescope was invented. The discovery of the dwarf planet Eris led to the discovery of other dwarf planets. Several space probes were sent out in space to further explore the solar system and are being continued today.

Solar System theorised

The solar system is theorised to have originated from a giant rotating cloud of dust and gas known as the solar nebula. This nebula collapsed due to its gravity. It spun faster and was flattened to a disc. Most of the material from this nebula moved towards the centre and formed the sun. Other particles collided and stuck together to form planetesimals (objects that are the size of asteroids). Some of these planetesimals combined to form comets, asteroids, moons and planets. The solar winds were very powerful and swept away lighter elements such as helium and hydrogen from the inner planets. The solar winds were much weaker in the outer planets and hence, they are predominantly made of helium and hydrogen.

Planets in our Solar System

In the order of their distance from the Sun, the planets in our solar system are Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus and Neptune. In the year 2006, The International Astronomical Union classified Pluto as a dwarf planet and it is effective, not included in this list. Apart from the planets, it also includes meteorites, comets, asteroids, a disc-shaped Kuiper Belt, a spherical Ort Cloud and a heliopause that is shaped like a teardrop. The solar system is estimated to stretch for a distance of 9 billion miles.

Planet Nine

Evidence for a new planet nicknamed “Planet x / Planet 9“was unveiled in 2016 bringing the number of planets in the solar system back to nine. It is estimated to have a mass that is 5,000 times that of Pluto and 10 times that of Earth. This planet x (video) is believed to exist between Neptune and Pluto. In any case, Pluto is the farthest object in our solar system orbiting in an elliptical and completely tilted axis.

The sun lies at the centre of our solar system and is by far, the largest object in it. It contains around 99.8% of the mass in the entire solar system. It provides light and heat without which life on Earth would stop. Most of the other objects in the solar system orbit in oval-shaped paths, with the sun slightly off centre from their paths.

Kinds of Planets

The planets in our solar system are of two kinds. The first kind is Terrestrial planets or planter whose surfaces are rocky. This includes Mercury, Venus, Earth and Mars. The other four are called Jovian planters because they are huge in comparison to the terrestrial planets and more importantly, are gaseous in nature. Jupiter and Saturn are basically called gas planets while Uranus and Neptune have more ice. A common feature is that all four planets contain helium and hydrogen.

Pluto also has solid rocky surfaces. But since it has been classified as a dwarf planet, it falls out of this list. The IAU defines a planet that can circle the sun without being the satellite of any other object while being large enough so that it can be rounded (by its own gravity) and must ‘clear the neighbourhood’ of other orbiting objects. The problem with Pluto is its small size and its odd orbit when compared with the other planets in our solar system. Most importantly, Pluto’s orbit shares space with other object belonging to the Kuiper Belt that lies beyond Neptune. Other dwarf planets are Eris, Makemake, Sedna and Haumea from the Kuiper Belt and Ceres from the Asteroid Belt that lies between Jupiter and Mars.

Comets

Comets are comprised of primarily rock and ice. They follow very long orbits that bring them closer to the sun at certain points. Some short-period comets are thought to originate from the Kuiper belt and complete their orbits within 200 years. Long period comets take more than 200 years to complete their orbits and they are believed to have originated from the Oort Cloud. When comets come very close to the sun, some of the ice in their central nucleus evaporates into gas which is carried outward, giving it a characteristic ‘tail’.

The Kuiper belt is long suspected to exist beyond Neptune and is estimated to house more than a trillion comets and some hundreds of thousands of icy bodies.  Beyond this lie the Oort Cloud, Heliosphere and Heliopause.