17 terms


terrestrial planet
One of the highly dense planets nearest to the sun; Mercury, Venus, Mars, and Earth.
Jovian planet
Any of the four outermost planets in the solar system; much larger than Earth and gaseous in nature (like Jupiter)
prograde rotation
The counterclockwise spin of a planet or moon as seen from above the planets North Pole; rotation in the same direction as the sun's direction.
retrograde rotation
The clockwise spin of a planet or moon as seen from above the planets North Pole.
gas giant
A planet that has deep, massive atmosphere, such as Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, or Neptune.
dwarf planet
Any object that orbits the sun, is round because of its own gravity, but has not cleared its orbital path.
A small, rocky object that orbits the sun, usually in a band between the orbits of Mars and Jupiter.
asteroid belt
The region of the solar system that is between the orbits of Mars and Jupiter and in which most asteroids orbit.
A machine that uses escaping gas from burning fuel to move.
A bright streak of light that results when a meteoroid burns up in the Earth's atmosphere.
A relatively small, rocky body that travels through space.
A meteoroid that reaches the Earth's surface without burning up completely.
The pushing or pulling force exerted by the engine of an aircraft or rocket.
artificial satellite
Any human-made object placed in orbit around a body in space.
space probe
An uncrewed vehicle that carries scientific instruments into space to collect scientific data.
space shuttle
A reusable space vehicle that takes off like a rocket and lands like an airplane.
space station
A long-term orbiting platform from which other vehicles can be launched or scientific research can be carried out.