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#798938 - 01/03/13 02:21 PM Solar System - Our Neighborhood  
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Mona - Astronomy Online content
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Chimpanzee

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Come tour the Solar System. It's our neighborhood, the star system in which we live. The Sun's gravity holds it all together - planets, dwarf planets, moons, asteroids, comets, Kuiper Belt objects. See what lies between the Sun and the farthest edge of the Oort Cloud.

Solar System - Our Neighborhood

Last edited by Mona - Astronomy; 05/15/18 06:16 PM. Reason: update title

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#798992 - 01/03/13 07:16 PM Re: Solar System - Our Neighborhood [Re: Mona - Astronomy]  
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What a fantastic tour! I had not heard of the scattered disk. NOt clear what that is.

#799101 - 01/04/13 06:48 PM Re: Solar System - Our Neighborhood [Re: Jilly]  
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Chimpanzee

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The scattered disk was new to me when I researched the Kuiper Belt some while ago, Jilly. I'm not surprised that you aren't clear what it is, because astronomers aren't either! Some put it as an extension to the Kuiper Belt, but others refer to it as a separate region because the objects in it behave differently. If I'm still around when they get enough evidence to decide, I can rewrite the Kuiper Belt!

But it's harder to study those outer regions than it is to study galaxies millions/billions of light years away. The galaxies give out radiation and telescopes can detect that. The small, icy bodies that get scarcely any sunlight are very tricky.


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#927837 - 05/15/18 07:33 AM Re: Solar System - Our Neighborhood [Re: Mona - Astronomy]  
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Chimpanzee

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Everything changes. There haven't been major changes to the view of our Solar System that I've described in this article. However I have made some updates to it. Do take a tour of the Solar System - Our Neighborhood.


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#927855 - 05/16/18 05:13 PM Re: Solar System - Our Neighborhood [Re: Mona - Astronomy]  
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Mona - Astronomy Online content
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Chimpanzee

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A relief map of Mercury.

It's a map of Mercury's northern hemisphere showing the topography. The lowest regions are shown in purple, and the highest regions are shown in red. The difference in elevation between the lowest and highest regions shown here is roughly 10 kilometers.

Among the prominent features visible here are the smooth northern volcanic plains and the enigmatic northern rise. The low-lying craters near the north pole host radar-bright materials, thought to be water ice.

The MESSENGER spacecraft was the first ever to orbit the planet Mercury, acquiring over a quarter of a million images plus other data sets. The mission ended when the spacecraft ran out of propellant and crashed onto the surface of the planet in April 2015.


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#927885 - 05/18/18 09:30 PM Re: Solar System - Our Neighborhood [Re: Mona - Astronomy]  
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Mona - Astronomy Online content
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Chimpanzee

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Posts: 7,015
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Mercury isn't a place where you'd ever expected to find ice. But in fact, there are places, such as Nercury's north pole, that never receive direct sunlight. In this image, red shows areas that are in shadow, as detected by MESSENGER. Yellow shows the locations of bright polar deposits imaged by Earth-based radar.

Updated from N. L. Chabot et al., Journal of Geophysical Research, 117, doi: 10.1029/2012JE004172 (2012).


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#927902 - 05/19/18 08:15 PM Re: Solar System - Our Neighborhood [Re: Mona - Astronomy]  
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Mona - Astronomy Online content
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Chimpanzee

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I came across The Planet Mercury Song the other day. It's one of a series of "Planet Songs for Children" and it's a delight. Parents, grandparents, teachers, aunts and uncles & others, you might know someone who'd like this. I'm also glad to say that unlike some well-meaning videos for kids, it is accurate.


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