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Order Of the Planets From The Sun

Order Of the Planets From The Sun

The order of the planets from the Sun used to be easy to remember by using the mnemonic My Very Educated Mother Just Served Us Nine Pizzas(Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune, and Pluto). I am not sure what to use since Pluto has been demoted to dwarf planet status. Maybe My Very Educated Mother Just Served Us Noodles??? Here are a few facts about each planet. They are very rudimentary facts, so, hopefully, you will do more research.

Mercury

You would expect the planet closest to the Sun to be the hottest, but it is not. Daytime temperatures can reach a blistering 450°C and then drop to a frigid -170°C at night. Kind of hard to know how to dress for that climate.

Venus

Talk about Dante’s inferno. Clouds of toxic gas and temperatures over 460°C make this the hottest planet in our Solar System. We can not design probes that can survive the planet’s atmosphere for more than a few minutes.

Earth

Let’s skip this one. I am sure you have studied plenty about it.

Mars

The possibility of microbial life in the distant past as well as bound water and carbon dioxide in the soil make this a very interesting focus of study.

Jupiter

Talk about confused. This planet has the most mass, but very low density. This gas giant is separated from Mars by the main asteroid belt which contains many other interesting objects.

Saturn

At one time it was thought that Saturn was the only planet with rings. Several space probes have confirmed that not only do other planets have rings, but some have more than Saturn.

Uranus

This planet has two related descriptions. It has a very low density and is made up of a large proportion of gas. That makes it a gas giant. A decent percentage of those gases are trapped in ice form, so it is sometimes referred to as an ice giant as well.

Neptune

The other ice giant, Neptune has many of the same frozen gases as Uranus. Methane gives both planets a bluish color.

Pluto has been reclassified as a dwarf planet, do not worry though. It is not alone in that category. There are three very large asteroids(Eris, Vespa, and Ceres) that are thought to have gravity and many of the qualifications to be considered dwarf planets.

We have written many articles about the planets for Universe Today. Here are some facts about planets, and here’s an article about the names of the planets.

If you’d like more info on the Solar System planets, check out NASA’s Solar System exploration page, and here’s a link to NASA’s Solar System Simulator.

We’ve also recorded a series of episodes of Astronomy Cast about every planet in the Solar System. Start here, Episode 49: Mercury.

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