Why is everything in the Solar system on a flat plane?

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Everything is on the same plane, and I was wondering why. I mean like, if you laid a reallllly flat and thin plate out, then everything rotating around the sun would fall in that, I mean the planets, not comets or whatever.
 

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  • #2
Borek
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That's not exactly true - while planets orbits do lie close to ecliptic, they are all more or less inclined.

From what I remember initial cloud from which Sun and planets formed get flat as a result of gravitation and rotation.
 
  • #3
D H
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This question was asked just a couple of days ago. See [thread=441523]this thread[/thread] and my response in [post=2951827]post #2[/post].
 
  • #4
davenn
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That's not exactly true - while planets orbits do lie close to ecliptic, they are all more or less inclined.
From what I remember initial cloud from which Sun and planets formed get flat as a result of gravitation and rotation.
Agreed ... Tho the major planets are within a couple of deg of the ecliptic, pluto is 17.14 deg. Most comets and many of the asteroids have highly inclined orbits.

Dave
 
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This question was asked just a couple of days ago. See [thread=441523]this thread[/thread] and my response in [post=2951827]post #2[/post].
The direct answer is a referal that says that the proto solar system was a a flat swirling disk. I guess it's clear that such a disk would attract down to it anything above or below it. I guess it's also clear that any rotating cloud in space would tend to form a disk because it would extend along the line of its equator (even the earth is a little fat).

What shape is the Oort cloud?
 
  • #6
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What shape is the Oort cloud?
The Opik-Oort cloud is roughly spherical. The members of the Oort cloud have, in many instance, been ejected from the solar system by gravitational interaction with Jupiter or the other giants. Since the ejection can be in any direction they tend to form such a sphere. I think there is some thought that the innermost part of the cloud is also planar, like the rest of the system.
 

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