Planets in Our Solar System
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Planets in our solar system circle around the sun. There are eight planets in our solar system. Smaller planets with solid ground include Mercury, Venus, Earth and Mars. There are four larger gas giants including Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus and Neptune. We are learning new things about our neighboring planets all the time. We send astronauts to space to take pictures, gather information and find out more about them. Their are eight planets inside of our own solar system and thousands of planets outside of our solar system.
A good way to remember the names of the planets is:
My Very Excellent Mother Just Served Us Noodles
Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune
Whatever happened to Pluto? in 2006 the International Astrological Union downgraded the status of Pluto to a dwarf planet. To be a planet it must orbit around the sun, has sufficient mass to assume equilibrium, and cleared the neighborhood around its orbit. Pluto made the first two hurdles but failed on clearing the neighborhood around its orbit. To clear the neighborhood around its orbit means that the planet has become gravitationally dominant. There would be no bodies of comparable size other than its own satellites under its gravitational influence. So poor Pluto remains an outsider.
Astronaunts are a special kind of scientist that takes space ships to outer space to study things like asteroids, the Earth's atmosphere, other planets and the moon. The first man to go into space was Yuri Gagarin from Russia in 1969. The first astronaut to walk on the moon with Neil Armstrong, from the United States, in 1969. Dr. Sally ride was the first American woman to make the journey to outer space when she flew aboard the Challenger in 1983.
Do you want to become an astronaut? To become an astronaut and work for NASA you must receive a bachelor's degree in engineering, computer science or mathematics, followed by three years of professional experience and one thousand hours of pilot in command time in a jet aircraft. You also need to pass a demanding astronaut physical examination.