The eight described planets all orbit the Sun at different distances; Mercury is the closest planet to the sun, followed by Venus, then Earth, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus and Neptune. The distances of the planets are normally measured in kilometers, because scientists use metric measurements. However, scientists also use a unit called an “astronomical unit,” which is equal to the distance between Earth and the sun.
Mercury is a hot, barren world that orbits the Sun at a distance of roughly 57 million kilometers. However, due to its heavy cloud cover and runaway greenhouse effect, Venus is hotter, even though it orbits the Sun at a distance of 108 million kilometers. The Earth is about 150 million kilometers from the Sun, which means that 1 AU is equal to about 150 million kilometers. Mars, the second closest planet to Earth, is about 228 million kilometers from the Sun.
Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus and Neptune are often called the outer planets, and they are very far from the sun. Only their large size makes them visible from the Earth from such long distances. Jupiter is about 778 million kilometers from the Sun, while Saturn is almost 1.5 billion kilometers from the Sun. Uranus and Neptune are even farther, orbiting the sun from a distance of 2.8 billion and 4.5 billion kilometers, respectively.Learn More
The diameters of the planets are as follows: Mercury is 3,032 miles; Venus is 7,521 miles; Earth is 7,926 miles; Mars is 4,222 miles; Jupiter is 88,846 miles; Saturn is 74,898 miles; Uranus is 31,763 miles; Neptune is 30,778 miles. As a result, the largest planet by diameter is Jupiter and the smallest is Mercury.Full Answer >
Nicknames for the eight planets in the solar system are Swift Planet for Mercury, Morning Star and Evening Star for Venus, Blue Planet for Earth, Red Planet for Mars, Giant Planet for Jupiter, Ringed Planet for Saturn, Ice Giant for Uranus and Big Blue Planet for Neptune. Pluto was once considered a planet and had the nickname Ice Planet, but it is now classified as a dwarf planet.Full Answer >
The closest planet to the sun is Mercury. After Mercury the order of the planets is Venus, Earth, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus and Neptune. Before Pluto was demoted from its planetary status it was after Neptune.Full Answer >
Depending on their orbital progress, Venus or Mars may be the closest planet to Earth at any given time. The distance between Venus and Earth varies between 24 and 162 million miles, and the distance between Earth and Mars varies between 34 and 250 million miles.Full Answer >