Soaringinto Space By: Claire Knight
Mercury • Since Mercury is so close to the sun a visitor could easily burn to death. However, at night it gets very cold so a visitor could also freeze to death. • Mercury has a wrinkly surface, scientists call these lobate scarps. • Mercury has no moons. • There is almost no air on Mercury. It has a very small atmosphere.
Venus • Venus has the hottest average temperature of any of the planets. • In many ways Venus is similar to Earth: volcanoes, valleys, and mountains. • Venus has no moons. • Because Venus and the Earth are the same size, scientists call Venus Earth's sister planet. For a long time most scientists thought that Venus probably had plants, animals, and possibly even people. However because Venus is so hot we now know that it is impossible for anything to live there.
Earth • Earth is the biggest of all the terrestrial planets. • The Earth’s temperature, atmosphere and life is just right to keep us alive. • The Earth has one moon called Luna. • Scientists use the Earth to study all the other planets. Since no human has ever visited another planet, we have to use what we know about the Earth, and try to guess what the other planets must be like. This is called Comparative Planetology.
Mars • Evidence shows that Mars once has rivers, streams, lakes and even an ocean. • Today the only water on Mars is frozen or in the polar caps. • Mars has two moons: Deimos and Phobos. • Mars has higher mountains, and deeper canyons than any other planet. The largest canyon on Mars would stretch from New York City to Los Angeles on the Earth. That makes the Grand Canyon look tiny. It Also has the Solar Systems biggest volcano, Olympus Mons.
Jupiter • Jupiter has had a storm blowing for over 300 years. This is the red spot in the center of it. • Jupiter has no solid surface. Under its atmosphere is a huge ocean of hydrogen and water. • Jupiter has at least 63 moons…WOW!! • You can see four of Jupiter's moons With a pair of binoculars at night. Also Jupiter spins really fast. It only takes 10 hours to go from night to day on Jupiter.
Saturn • Saturn has BEAUTIFUL rings that stretch 169,800 miles wide. • The sky gradually turns into liquid until the entire thing is an ocean. • Saturn has 34 moons. • Saturn has several hundred rings; however it is not the only planet with rings.
Uranus • Uranus spins on its side…very odd!! • Because of Uranus’ extreme pressure it could contain trillions of diamonds. • Uranus has 27 moons. 5 of these moons are very large. • Scientists believe Uranus has a huge water ocean underneath its clouds.
Neptune • Neptune has a giant storm, much like the storm on Jupiter. • For many centuries people did not know Neptune even existed. It was discovered by Johanne Galle. • Neptune has 13 moons that we know of. • Scientists think there is a very large ocean under Neptune’s clouds.
Quick Questions • Besides Saturn, which other planets have rings? • Which two planets are under a storm? • Which two planets are believed to have an ocean under their clouds? • If you were in search for a wedding ring which planet would you go to first???
Sources • www.kidsastonomy.com • Pictures obtained from Google images.