Our Solar System and its exploration | The sun and its 8 planets

Our solar system

Our Solar System is a particular configuration of planets, dwarf planets, and other celestial bodies. In simple, it is a gravitational bound system, in which the Sun is at the center and all the 8 planets and other objects revolve(directly or indirectly) around it. Our solar system is the one over the 500 known solar systems in the entire Milky Way galaxy. It was formed 4.5 billion years ago, when the cloud of interstellar gas collapsed resulting in solar-nebula. And then our solar system was formed.

Our solar system is located in the star cluster of Orion-spur in the Milky Way. But only 15% of the stars in our galaxy hosting planetary system. And one of the stars is our own Sun. In recent-decade, our understanding of the solar system revolution is impressively improved. But deep questions remain, or even more.

Components of the Solar System

The components of the solar system are given below:

  • The Sun
  • All eight planets(Terrestrial and Jovian).
  • Dwarf planet and Moons.
  • Asteroid Belts(astroids group and ceres) and
  • Kuiper Belts( Trans-Naptunian region).

The sun

The sun is the huge hot ball of plasma. It is the dominant body of our solar system carrying 98% of the total mass. It is the heart of our solar system, located at the center of it. Whose gravity is so intense, which helps to keep the planets and other objects in its orbit. But it is smaller than other big stars. And it is a yellow dwarf star, is just one of the billions of stars in the Milky Way galaxy.

The Planet

Our solar system consists of eight planets. Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune. And these planets revolving around the sun in their respected or defined orbit. But, these are classified into two categories.

  1. Terrestrial planets: These are rocky planets that is composed of primarily silicate rock or metals.
    • Mercury
    • Venus
    • Earth
    • Mars
  2. Jovians Planets:
    • Gas Giant: these are predominantly made of Helium and Hydrogen.
      1. Jupiter
      2. Saturn
  3. Ice Giant: Made up of rock-ice, molecules of water, methane, and ammonia.
      1. Uranus and
      2. Neptune

To know more about Planets in our solar system and their Moons, read our article: “Planet System”

Asteroid Belt

Asteroid belt mainly consists of asteroids and dwarf planets(like Ceres, Vesta, Pallas, and Hygiea). And the structure of asteroids belt is torus-shaped in the solar system. The asteroid belt carrying over 200 asteroids known to be larger than 100 km in diameter. But according to a survey in the infrared wavelengths, there are between 700,000 to 1.7 million asteroids are present in it. Asteroid belt orbiting the terrestrial planet. Which is located roughly between the orbits of the planets Jupiter and mars and revolves around the sun.

Kuiper Belt

Kuiper belt is located in the trans-Neptunian region and orbiting the Jovians planets. the Kuiper belt is the home for the comets and asteroids. Apart from it is also the home for Pluto(dwarf planet). Kuiper belt is the birthplace of Comets.

Oort-cloud(Home of long-period comets)

Beyond the Kuiper belt is the Oort-cloud region. A Dutch astronomer Jan Oort discovers the Oort cloud in 1950. It is the vast spherical collection of icy debris. The Oort-cloud is considered as the edge of the solar system. And it is thought to be the origin of most of the long-period of comets in our solar system. But no one knows for sure how many objects in it. Moreover, is estimated around 2 trillion objects are there. Two recent comets discovered are C/2012 S1 (ISON) and C/2013 A1 siding spring in the Oort region.

Formation of the Solar System

Our solar system is originated or formed approximately 4.5 billion light-years ago from a dense vast cloud of the stellar nursery. But this vast cloud of a stellar nursery or stellar nebula was formed from a hot giant star. Due to the supernova explosion of a hot giant star. And due to the shockwave blasting through space, the interstellar cloud of gas start collapsing. And forming a spinning swirling disc material called solar-nebula.

At the center of this spinning nebula. Due to its own gravity, almost all of the materials of dust or gas pulled toward the center of it. Eventually, in the core of this nebula, the pressure was so high that the H-gas starts fusing and forming He-gas. And also releasing a tremendous amount of energy. There-after our sun took birth with 99% of available matter and rest 1% dispersed into space.

But, these dispersed matters, that was farther(outer disc) also started chunks together. And these chunked materials smashed into one another. And, then start forming larger and larger objects. Some of them formed so big, form planets, dwarf planets, and large moons. But the rest of the other formed large pieces of rock called asteroids. Most of the asteroids reside in asteroids belts and the rest resides in Kuiper belts. And the leftover is comets, meteoroids, and small irregular moons, etc. Moreover, all these objects revolve around the sun.

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