# What Temp is an Object Orbiting the Sun?

• pkalmond
In summary, the temperature of an object orbiting the Sun at the same distance as the Earth would vary from about -160ºC to over 200ºC, depending on whether it is sunlit or shaded. However, when the object is away from any thermal influence, such as in deep space, the temperature drops to the cosmic background radiation temperature of approximately 4 K. This is due to the object being in thermal equilibrium with its surroundings, similar to how the Earth is at a stable temperature due to absorbing and emitting energy from its surroundings.
pkalmond
An object (a tin can for example) orbiting the Sun at about the same distance as the Earth would be what temperature?

This is really not a question about the sky is it :)

In any region close to the Earth, the temperature can vary from about -160ºC to over 200ºC, based on Table 11-43 "Typical Operating Temperature Ranges for Selected Spacecraft Components," from "Space Mission Analysis and Design," Wertz and Larson (eds) Kluwer 1999, ISBN 1884883108.

the variation depends on if it is sunlit or shaded
when you get away from any thermal influence of the sun or other body, ie. deep space, the temperature drops to the cosmic background radiation temp of ~ 4 K

Dave

Sure it's a question about the sky. If the Earth is at a stable temperature that means that it absorbs about as much energy from it's surroundings (the sky) as it emits.

Earth is at thermal equilibrium with with it's surroundings (more or less), so when the tin can is in thermal equilibrium it will be at the same average temperature.

## 1. What is the temperature of an object orbiting the Sun?

The temperature of an object orbiting the Sun can vary depending on several factors such as its distance from the Sun, composition, and atmosphere. On average, objects in the inner solar system (Mercury, Venus, Earth, and Mars) have higher temperatures due to their proximity to the Sun, while objects in the outer solar system (Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune) have lower temperatures due to their distance from the Sun. The temperature can range from extremely hot (over 700 degrees Celsius) to extremely cold (below -200 degrees Celsius).

## 2. Does the temperature of an object change as it orbits the Sun?

Yes, the temperature of an object can change as it orbits the Sun. As the object moves closer to the Sun, it receives more heat and its temperature increases. Similarly, as the object moves away from the Sun, it receives less heat and its temperature decreases. This change in temperature can also be affected by the object's rotation, atmosphere, and any external factors such as collisions with other objects.

## 3. How does the distance from the Sun affect the temperature of an object?

The distance from the Sun directly affects the temperature of an object. The closer an object is to the Sun, the more heat it receives and the higher its temperature. On the other hand, the farther an object is from the Sun, the less heat it receives and the lower its temperature. This is because the Sun is the primary source of heat in our solar system.

## 4. Can an object in orbit around the Sun have a constant temperature?

No, it is highly unlikely for an object in orbit around the Sun to have a constant temperature. As mentioned earlier, the temperature of an object in orbit can change due to various factors. Even if the object is in a relatively stable orbit, small changes in its distance from the Sun or its orientation can affect its temperature.

## 5. How do scientists measure the temperature of objects orbiting the Sun?

Scientists use various methods to measure the temperature of objects orbiting the Sun. One common method is using infrared sensors that detect the heat emitted by the object. Another method is using spectroscopy, which measures the wavelengths of light emitted by the object and can provide information about its temperature. Additionally, spacecraft and telescopes can also collect thermal data and images of objects in orbit around the Sun to determine their temperature.

• Classical Physics
Replies
4
Views
878
• Classical Physics
Replies
3
Views
1K
• Classical Physics
Replies
40
Views
2K
• Classical Physics
Replies
58
Views
4K
• Classical Physics
Replies
3
Views
1K
• Classical Physics
Replies
4
Views
646
• Classical Physics
Replies
9
Views
3K
• Classical Physics
Replies
86
Views
4K
• Astronomy and Astrophysics
Replies
17
Views
2K
• Classical Physics
Replies
58
Views
2K