Descriptive Astronomy 101
Solar System Overview
The Solar System Overview
Major objects in the Solar System from the center outward.
All the planets revolve around the Sun in the same direction.
Most of the planets lie in a common plane - the plane of the Ecliptic
The orbits of the planets are nearly circular
Actual shape of a planetary orbit:
Many planets have axes of rotation that are nearly perpendicular to the ecliptic
Inner planets are made of rocks and metals
Outer planets are made of gases and ices
Orbital periods increase with increasing distance from the Sun.
The Sun has a relatively slow rotation - approximately 27.5 days