After reading this question and seeing its image I thought about this question I'm going to publish.

Does the Sun have different unique orbits around the barycenter for its multiple planets?

If yes, how does it revolve around all of them? For this it has to exit one orbit and enter another.

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    $\begingroup$ There is just one barycenter - the center of mass of all combined bodies. There isn't a unique barycenter for the Sun-Mercury system, Sun-Venus system, etc. $\endgroup$
    – Jim421616
    Commented Sep 14, 2023 at 18:22
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Those barycenters have exactly as much reality as the solar system barycenter has. They're all just calculated relative positions based on the positions and masses of the objects you choose to include in the calculation. $\endgroup$
    – notovny
    Commented Sep 14, 2023 at 21:15
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    $\begingroup$ Related question: astronomy.stackexchange.com/questions/44851/… $\endgroup$
    – Heopps
    Commented Sep 15, 2023 at 7:50

1 Answer 1


There's only one barycenter for the solar system, which includes the impact from every planet, asteroid, comet, and space probe in the solar system. The path the sun takes around that barycenter is mostly a circle because the Sun-Jupiter interaction completely dominates the physics of the system, but it's a bit wobbly due to all the interacting forces of the other bodies (mostly Saturn).

You can calculate the location of the barycenter between the sun and any other body in the system, but the sun doesn't continually switch which one of those it's paying attention to. It has to obey all of them all the time, leading to a complicated wobbly path around the single Solar System barycenter.

But it doesn't stop there, because all those other bodies are pulling on each other as well -- even as Jupiter is pulling on the sun and Saturn is pulling on the sun, those two are pulling on each other, making their orbits wobble as well, which feeds back into the sun's wobble. It's an almost infinitely complex interaction of forces.


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