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What are the major differences between the 8 planets of our solar system?

  1. Oct 4, 2009 #1
    Was thinking about the solar system and came to this question to which I cannot figure out a simple, definite answer. Maybe something having to do the elements that compose the planets?
  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 4, 2009 #2
    Inner four planets consist of rocks...hard stuff. Outer four consist of gas. This is because when the sun ignited it pushed the gases outside leaving only the rocks and dust inside.
  4. Oct 5, 2009 #3
    You can split the planets into two major categories: Terrestrial planets: Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars a jovian planets such as Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune. There are a lot of differences in:
    - size: The jovian planets are much larger.
    - mass: The jovian planets are much more massive
    - density: The terrestrial planets are composed of mainly rocks/metals and their average density is much higher than that of liquid water. The jovian planets have densities about equal to that of water.
    - composition: as stated above
    - rings: as far as we know, the terrestrial planets do not have any
    - moons: The jovian planets are superior in number of satellites. Mercury and Venus do not even have any moons.
    - rotation: The jovian planets despite their large size spin faster than the terrestrial planets
    - magnetic fields: The terrestrial planets have much weaker mag. fields than the jovian planets have
    - distance from the Sun: (obviously)

    and maybe (for sure) even more....
  5. Oct 5, 2009 #4
    Among the 8 planets, Earth is the most unique: it has life and inteligence of people. Besides, Earth possesses a very big moon considering its mass.
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