Learn About The Solar System ❂
Our Solar System consists of an average sized star (but a very important one!) at its centre called the Sun, with a system of gravitationally bound bodies that orbit it. The largest of those objects are the Planets (and their moons), with the smaller comets and minor planets (such as the dwarf planets, the asteroid belt, Jupiter trojans, Centaurs, the Kuiper belt, Scattered disc and Oort cloud) making up the rest!
It's thought the solar system formed 4.6 billion years ago from a giant interstellar cloud of gas which coalesced into everything we see today. The extent of the solar system is sometimes thought of where the solar wind meets the interstellar medium known as the heliosphere. However, the Oort cloud, which is thought to contain objects still gravitationally influenced by the Sun, may extend a thousand times further out! Our Sun is located 26,000 light years from the centre of the Milky Way Galaxy and is thought to be just one of the one hundred billion stars in the galaxy!
Our Sun & Nearest Star!
The Star at the centre of our solar system is called the Sun! Learn about how it formed, what satellites have been specifically launched to study it, how it will change in the future and see some incredible images of it!
Our Home Planet Earth
The 3rd rock from the Sun has 71% of its surface covered with water so it could be called Planet Water! At over 4 billion years old it's a complex world with one natural satellite - the Moon - and is the only celestial body known to harbour life!
Earth's closet celestial companion and only natural permanent satellite! The Moon is the 5th largest moon in the solar system and completes an orbit around Earth every 29.5 days! Learn all about the Moon and its exploration by humans!
Learn About The Asteroid Belt
Read Interesting Fun Facts all about the doughnut-shaped region of asteroids that orbit the Sun between Mars and Jupiter, which is home to the majority of the inner solar system's minor planets!
Moons of the Planets and More!
There are a total of 205 moons that orbit around 6 planets & a further 9 moons known to orbit four dwarf planets. Amazingly though, there are also over 330 minor planets that have had moons discovered orbiting them! Learn all about these crazy moon systems!
Near Earth Objects - (NEOs)
Read interesting Facts all about the comets and asteroids that have been perturbed by the planets into orbits which enter Earth’s neighbourhood. Astronomers are constantly searching and discovering new NEOs looking for any on a collision course with Earth!
Beyond the Planets - The Kuiper Belt
The fascinating disc-shaped region beyond Planet Neptune which is a subset of the broader trans-Neptunian region that is populated with icy remnant minor planets (and dwarf planets). Learn all you need to know about the Kuiper belt!
Scattered Disc & Oort Cloud
The Scattered Disc is a thick ‘doughnut-shaped’ region of the outer solar system beyond the Kuiper belt that is populated with icy minor planets. The more distant (& theoretical) icy Oort Cloud lies even further out and stretch as far as 50,000 AU from the Sun and are both are thought to be home to Comets!
Comets - The Wanderers!
Comets are icy small solar system bodies that can sometimes have a long bright tail that may be seen from Earth. They have been observed and recorded since ancient times but we understand them better nowadays and you can Learn All the Fun Facts About Comets Here!