Questions regarding celestial bodies in orbit around a star.

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2answers
85 views

Alignment of Semi-Major Axis of Orbits

So I'd like to ask whether the semi-major axis of planetary orbits are aligned? Logically, they shouldn't be, but many websites act as if they are. If they're not aligned, what's the angle between the ...
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2answers
143 views

Could a star revolve around a planet? [duplicate]

They actually do, but let's set Relativity aside for a moment. And the whole barycenter thing too. Here's the scenario: Somewhere in the backwaters of a galaxy there is this huge planet. It is NOT a ...
3
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1answer
152 views

Why is the Color scheme of natural satellites in our solar system based of light shades of grey?

What is the explanation of the color similarity that the majority of natural satellites obtain?
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3answers
201 views

Is extraterrestrial mining more difficult or impractical for bodies without plate tectonics?

This article talks about the possibility of mining Uranium on the moon. Since the Moon lacks the geological forces that have created veins of concentrated minerals on Earth, would extraterrestrial ...
2
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0answers
45 views

Are there equal number of planets, stars, galaxies etc in observable universe spinning in both directions?

Just because we observed that our milky way galaxy is spinning in a certain direction therefore we assume it is applicable to all other galaxies, I am curious to find out if hypothetically most of the ...
11
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2answers
460 views

Is there a ninth planet?

After Pluto's demotion as a planet, we have currently eight planets in our solar system. But Sun's gravitational pull can be felt well beyond Pluto, so is it possible to have a ninth planet beyond ...
15
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1answer
3k views

How did Mars come to have a 24 hour 39 minute day?

Mercury rotates three times for every two revolutions around the Sun, apparently due to a gravitational resonance with the Sun.Venus takes about 225 days to rotate, and rotates in the opposite ...
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3answers
278 views

Brown Dwarf transcending past the sun with the naked eye [closed]

I seen with my naked eye in mid 2014 from Ca. right after sunrise a black spot in front of the Sun.I observed it for about a hour with my naked eye. Here is a picture that closely resembles what I ...
6
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2answers
124 views

White dwarf's impact on orbiting bodies

Recently the Kepler telescope in its study of white dwarfs detected the first planetary object transiting a white dwarf in the data from the K2 mission. It was consistent with earlier theories' ...
11
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2answers
113 views

Subterranean Oceans On Other Planets/Planetoids: How Do Astronomers Deduce This

Recently I have been looking into planetoids in our asteroid belt and I have found one that caught my interest, Ceres. One of the main points that was said about it was that it had a subterranean ...
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3answers
197 views

mountains higher than atmosphere

Is it theoretically possible that planets exist with mountains so high that their peaks overtop the planets atmosphere? And which physical laws are relevant for this question? I'm just curious. Thanks ...
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1answer
66 views

How much of the ambient radiation on Mars is arriving line of sight from the Sun?

I read a lot about the amount of radiation bodies like the Moon and Mars receive, but it's hard to find information about where the radiation is coming from. It seems to me that it's cosmic radiation ...
4
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1answer
167 views

How is it that all planets (and moons) in our solar system are in equilibrium orbits?

Previously, I was told that in order for any bodies to orbit each other for over a long period of time, the orbital period, distance and masses have to be precisely matched such that the bodies won't ...
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1answer
43 views

Questions about terminology used for Mars and its moons

I am having difficulty with some terminology: sub-Martian hemisphere of Deimos ... what place on Deimos does it refer to? leading/trailing apex of Phobos ... what place are those? Apex ... in ...
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0answers
116 views

Is there a web service providing orbital data of solar bodies (planets, comets, asteroids, dwarf planets)?

I would like to be able to connect to a web-service and retrieve JSON data containing information on current (as of today or so) orbits of planets, comets, asteroids, and dwarf planets in our solar ...
7
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2answers
779 views

If a person were to die on the Moon or Mars, would the body decompose?

There wouldn't be enough oxygen for any bacteria to decompose the body, right? Not to mention, the radiation of space might kill off most organisms on it. So would it decompose, given millions of ...
3
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0answers
20 views

dataset of stars in the milky way galaxy [duplicate]

Does anyone have any idea were I can get a dataset of stars in the milky way galaxy, their mass and their planets and distance of planets from their star? I have tried various catalogs of NASA. I ...
3
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1answer
47 views

How do proto-planetary nebulae gain momentum?

currently I am curious about proto-planetary nebulae. At first I was curious about how planets spin but I read in a couple of articles that they got their spin from when they were in a proto-planetary ...
2
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1answer
45 views

Estimation of average rock and asteroid mass associated with different stars

There is a lot of information on different star types and compositions. Can we make estimates of the total mass of rock, ice, and non stellar matter that orbits stars based on star evolution models? ...
2
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1answer
74 views

Spheres in space [duplicate]

I know that gravity will turn a mass into a sphere, which is why planets and stars are that shape. But then we have asteroids and small moons which are not spherical. Such as a couple of Pluto's ...
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1answer
35 views

Amount of EM radiation (and particles) Earth “receives” from other planets in our solar system?

Can it be (or has it been already?) measured how much and what kind of EM radiation (apart from visible light)/particles Earth "receives" from a specific planet in our solar system? Can other planets ...
2
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1answer
60 views

Does tidal heating imply orbit degradation?

What compensate the energy loss in tidal heating? Is it orbital decay?
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1answer
30 views

Elemental abundances in the crust of exoplanets and accessibility to them

Suppose I am orbiting a rocky planet (density = 4.4 g/cm3) two-thirds the mass of Mars in the Habitable Zone of Gliese 251. This planet has a thin atmosphere, presumably from out-gassing, still has ...
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2answers
374 views

Do all planets have a van Allen radiation belt?

Earth has the van Allen radiation belts. Which other planets have one? Can it be determined if distant planets in other solar systems have one?
8
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1answer
172 views

Pluto- Current theories regarding its geological nature?

The images of New Horizons from Pluto will take more a year to arrive from space, for the moment with have some compressed images as a preview. Nasa has advanced some information regarding the ...
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1answer
84 views

How significant is a planet's density to the formation of life?

I'm doing some writing set on a fictional earthlike planet that for reasons needs to be substantially larger than Earth but can't have substantially higher gravity. I've been able to compromise with a ...
6
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2answers
143 views

Official Definition of Satellite?

So I had an argument with a friend, which was about whether the Moon is a planet or a satellite. IAU 2006 Resolution B5 gives definitions on what it is to be a planet, but there is a vagueness, as I ...
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1answer
176 views

Planets and moons positions in cartesian coordinates?

Is there freely available and reliable source, where one can find positions of planets and moons of the Solar system at given time in cartesian coordinates? (I am writing a simple gravity simulator ...
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2answers
539 views

How to calculate a planet's current position within the solar system

I'm making an application that needs to calculate a planet's current position within the solar system - I don't want to calculate its position in the sky. For example, what I want to do is exactly ...
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1answer
602 views

what planet is the most radioactive?

So as I understand it the source of most geothermal energy on Earth is due to radioactive decay. Jupiter is the most massive planet but if the bulk of it's mass comes from gaseous elements instead of ...
2
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1answer
138 views

What will the last days of Earth be like?

The sun is a main-sequence star; as I understand it the sun will expand into a red giant in a few billion years. I have heard conflicting reports of what this entails - some sources I found say the ...
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2answers
161 views

What is the axial tilt of a planet measured relative to?

I am very much a beginner on the astronomy front but I understand about planets having different axial tilts, hence why Venus turns the opposite direction from the Earth and Uranus turns sideways. ...
2
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1answer
371 views

How long will it take Pluto to grow to planet size? [closed]

Pretty much everything in our solar system has collisions with smaller objects that lead to an increase in the mass of the larger. With Pluto being one of the largest things in the area of which it ...
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2answers
336 views

How did Jupiter form where it is?

Since Jupiter is the biggest planet in our solar system and is made up of mostly hydrogen and helium, (the gases the Sun uses to create energy), how come it didn't form as far out as say Uranus or ...
11
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2answers
249 views

Can there be an object with planetary discriminant between Ceres and Neptune?

The planetary discriminant is a measure of how dominant a body is within its region of the solar system. For (true) planets, it is $>10000$ and for dwarf planets it is $<1$. (See this answer to ...
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0answers
16 views

Do the planetary ring lasts? [duplicate]

Almost all gas giants in our solar system are observed to have a planetary ring comprises of ice, dust and rocks. My question is do these rings obediently sticks around their foster parent until our ...
11
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4answers
198 views

Where might a semi proficient amateur analyst participate in meaningful astronomical efforts

I am a retired engineer that has an ongoing interest in space efforts. In my youth I did work on the Apollo program but on propulsion and vehicle thermal control: not flight dynamics. I have ...
2
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2answers
206 views

On a log-log plot of surface gravity to planet mass, what is the meaning of the y-intercept?

I am playing around with data from exoplanets.org, and am interested in the plot of surface gravity to planet mass. I reproduced this plot after downloading their data and performed a non-linear ...
6
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2answers
308 views

Why does the Solar System have no (natural) satellites of satellites?

What are the conditions for a planetary moon to have a satellite of its own? How far do the Solar System's bodies fall from the necessary threshold?
2
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4answers
155 views

Is there a way to tell what the surface of a planet is like?

Kepler-442b I'm doing a project in which I need to find a planet within our galaxy that might be habitable. I found this planet that is within its stellar system's habitable zone, and due to research ...
6
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4answers
194 views

Image sets for testing stacking algorithms?

I am looking for sets of astronomical images for testing different kinds of stacking algorithms. The idea is simple: if one has $N$ images of the same object, the signal-to-noise ratio of the ...
4
votes
1answer
239 views

Calculating RA/dec from JPL ephemeris data

I'm using JPL planetary ephemerides to calculate the position of planets. Using DE405 ephemeris (using a parser provided by Project Pluto with all tests passing). I am fetching the position of Mars ...
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3answers
216 views

Years, Months, Day, and Weeks?

Sorry if this is a basic question. 1 year = earth revolution around the sun 1 month = moon revolution around the earth 1 week = 7 days = ??? 1 day = earth rotation about its axis Why do we ...
3
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2answers
68 views

Can we know the orbital planes of extraterrestrial planetary bodies?

Astronomers can tell if there are any exoplanets orbiting its parent star using but not limited to the following methods: Transit As an massive object usually a planet passing in front of a star ...
1
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1answer
111 views

Equations for coordinates of solar system objects

I would like to write a program that visualizes the solar system. To do this, I would need equations for calculating the coordinates of each solar system object at a given time. Where could I obtain ...
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1answer
41 views

Are there any works discussing planetary bodies being forms of life?

I'm searching for works or individuals that consider and discuss the idea of planetary bodies being considered stand alone living creatures, rather than objects either capable or incapable of ...
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2answers
360 views

Open problems in astronomy that an amateur (with a PhD in some other field) would have a chance of solving?

What are some open problems in astronomy that an amateur would have a chance of solving? Suppose the amateur has a PhD in some other field, owns a basic telescope, a set of filters, diffraction ...
2
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0answers
22 views

are all the planet in the same plane? [duplicate]

are all the planet in solar system the same plane in the space or not ? if yes is there any especial reason ? and if no how do they orbits then ? as far as i know they are in the same plane , but is ...
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3answers
182 views

BIG CRUNCH Theory

Someday before i read about a article which explained about a phenomenon called BIG CRUNCH, according to it the way Big Bang happened because of which the remains moved away from one another forming ...
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2answers
242 views

Where is Mars in the night sky

I live around Houston, Texas and I'm taking advantage of Earth hour to look at the stars. I've found two objects that I think might be Mars. Both of them are in roughly the same plane as Venus and ...