PH Earth Science The Earth-Moon System Planet Earth Earth is the third planet from the Sun. Earth rotates (spins) on its imaginary axis and revolves (circles) around the sun. Water occurs as a solid (ice), a liquid, or a gas (water vapor) Earth has one natural satellite , the moon.
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The Earth-Moon System
- Satellite: Any object that revolves around another object
- Orbit: the curved path followed by a satellite (Earth is a satellite of the sun.)
Why do things orbit other things?
Animation of revolution and seasons
- most direct rays of the sun are focused at the equator
-Spring ~ March 21, Fall ~ September 21
Q: If ½ of the moon is always lit by the sun, why do we not always see it?
A: Because the lit side does not always face us!
click for animation
Phases of the Moon
August 11, 1999 Soissons, France
One of Jupiter’s moons causing a solar eclipse on Jupiter (notice the shadow).