These are organized by a classification scheme developed exclusively for Cosma. More…
Solar System : the sun together with the group of celestial bodies that are held by its attraction and revolve around it; also : a similar system centered on another star — Webster
Solar System is the gravitationally bound system comprising the Sun and the objects that orbit it, either directly or indirectly. Of those objects that orbit the Sun directly, the largest eight are the planets, with the remainder being significantly smaller objects, such as dwarf planets and small Solar System bodies. Of the objects that orbit the Sun indirectly, the moons, two are larger than the smallest planet, Mercury.
The Solar System formed 4.6 billion years ago from the gravitational collapse of a giant interstellar molecular cloud. The vast majority of the system’s mass is in the Sun, with most of the remaining mass contained in Jupiter. The four smaller inner planets, Mercury, Venus, Earth and Mars, are terrestrial planets, being primarily composed of rock and metal. The four outer planets are giant planets, being substantially more massive than the terrestrials. The two largest, Jupiter and Saturn, are gas giants, being composed mainly of hydrogen and helium; the two outermost planets, Uranus and Neptune, are ice giants, being composed mostly of substances with relatively high melting points compared with hydrogen and helium, called volatiles, such as water, ammonia and methane. All planets have almost circular orbits that lie within a nearly flat disc called the ecliptic. — Wikipedia
Solar System News -- ScienceDaily Solar System Planets. Astronomy articles on the eight planets, plus the two dwarf planets, Pluto and Eris. Great pictures of everything in the solar system. Updated daily.
Mercury's poles may be icier than scientists...
on September 19, 2017 at 4:31 pm
A new study identifies three large surface ice deposits near Mercury's north pole, and suggests there could be many additional small-scale deposits that would dramatically increase the planet's surface ice inventory. […]
Nanosat fleet proposed for voyage to 300 asteroids
on September 19, 2017 at 1:26 pm
A fleet of tiny spacecraft could visit over 300 asteroids in just over three years, according to a mission study. The Asteroid Touring Nanosat Fleet concept comprises 50 spacecraft propelled by innovative electric solar wind sails (E-sails) and equipped with instruments to take images and collect spectroscopic data on the composition of the asteroids. Each nanosat would visit six or seven asteroids before returning to Earth to deliver the data. […]
NASA's Cassini spacecraft ends its historic...
on September 16, 2017 at 2:30 pm
A thrilling epoch in the exploration of our solar system has come to a close, as NASA's Cassini spacecraft made a fateful plunge into the atmosphere of Saturn, ending its 13-year tour of the ringed planet. Cassini's plunge brings to a close a series of 22 dives between Saturn and its rings, a feat never before attempted by any spacecraft. […]
Hubble observes pitch black planet
on September 14, 2017 at 7:22 pm
Astronomers have discovered that the well-studied exoplanet WASP-12b reflects almost no light, making it appear essentially pitch black. This discovery sheds new light on the atmospheric composition of the planet and also refutes previous hypotheses about WASP-12b's atmosphere. The results are also in stark contrast to observations of another similarly sized exoplanet. […]
New gravity map suggests Mars has a porous crust
on September 13, 2017 at 11:30 pm
Scientists have found evidence that Mars' crust is not as dense as previously thought, a clue that could help researchers better understand the Red Planet's interior structure and evolution. […]
Are we being watched? Tens of other worlds could...
on September 9, 2017 at 12:55 am
Scientists have turned exoplanet-hunting on its head, in a study that instead looks at how an alien observer might be able to detect Earth using our own methods. They find that at least nine exoplanets are ideally placed to observe transits of Earth. […]
Climate change for aliens
on September 7, 2017 at 3:24 pm
For more than 50 years, the Kardashev scale has been the gold standard for classifying hypothetical 'exo-civilizations' by their ability to harness energy. A team of researchers has devised a new system that takes into account the impacts of that energy use. […]
Pluto features given first official names
on September 7, 2017 at 3:24 pm
The Working Group for Planetary System Nomenclature of the International Astronomical Union has officially approved the naming of 14 features on the surface of Pluto. These are the first geological features on the planet to be named following the close flyby by the New Horizons spacecraft in July 2015. […]
Earth as hybrid planet: New classification places...
on September 6, 2017 at 5:55 pm
A new classification scheme has been devised for the evolutionary stages of worlds based on 'non-equilibrium thermodynamics' -- a planet's energy flow being out of sync, as the presence of life could cause. […]
Does the organic material of comets predate our...
on September 6, 2017 at 3:46 pm
The Rosetta space probe discovered a large amount of organic material in the nucleus of comet 'Chury.' Researchers now advance the theory that this matter has its origin in interstellar space and predates the birth of the solar system. […]