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Solar System

The Solar System to scale: the sizes and distances in this window are all shown to scale. Use the scrollbar on the right of this window to explore the planets (and wide empty spaces) of the Solar System. (Values shown are mean distances in Astronomical Units from the Sun).

Map of the Solar System

A schematic map of the Solar System, showing the relative arrangement of the planets' orbits around the Sun. Note that the planets themselves are not drawn to scale here, and are placed arbitrarily in their orbits. For the planets' current positions in the sky, see the Planet Wheel.

A system that consists of the Sun, eight major planets, a growing number of dwarf planets, approaching two hundred known attendant moons, and a huge variety of asteroids, comets and other objects.

Relative Galactic Position of the Solar System

The Sun lies in the main disc of the Galaxy, about 30,000 light years from the central Core. The Solar System is on the edge of a dense region known as the Orion Arm.

The Sun, Venus and Mercury

The heart of the Solar System: the Sun seen from a location near its second planet, Venus. The inner planet Mercury is visible as a tiny crescent to the right-hand side of this image.


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