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Early Astronomy The Earth-Moon-Sun System Earth's Moon


the scientific study of the universe; It includes the observation and interpretation of celestial bodies and phenomena


describes the concept of an Earth-centered universe


describes the view that the sun is at the center of the solar system

retrograde motion

the apparent westward motion of the planets with respect to the stars

astronomical unit (AU)

average distance from he Earth to the sun; 1.5 × 10⁸, or million kilometers


an oval


the spinning of a body, such as earth, about its axis


the motion of one bode about another, as Earth about the sun


a slow motion of Earth's axis that traces out a cone over a period of 26,000 years


the point in the orbit of a planet where it is closest to the sun


the place in the orbit of a planet where the planet is farthest from the sun


the point at which the moon is closest to the Earth


the point where the moon is farthest from Earth

phases of the moon

the progression of changes in the moon's appearance during the month

solar eclipse

an eclipse of the sun; a solar eclipse occurs when the moon moves in a line directly between Earth and the sun, casting a shadow on earth

lunar eclipse

an eclipse of the moon; occurs when the moon passes through Earth's shadow


the depression at the summit of a volcano or that which is produced by a meteorite impact


any of a system of bright elongated streaks sometimes associated with a craters on the moon


a small rocky body, which can range in size from a few hundred kilometers to less the one kilometer. They are mostly between Mars and Jupiter.


A small body made up of rocky and metallic pieces held together by froze glass. they normally revolve around the sun in an elongated orbit.


A fuzzy, gaseous component of a comets head


Latin for the smooth areas of the moon formerly thought to be seas


A long channel associated with a lunar maria. Looks similar to a valley or a trench.


Any of a system of bright elongated streaks, sometimes associated with crater on the moon.

lunar regolith

A thin gray layer on the moon's surface, consisting of loosely compacted fragmented material believed to have been formed by many meteorites hitting it.

terrestrial planet

Any of the earth like planets, Mercury, Venus, Earth and Mars.

Jovian planet

Planets with low densities and are huge gas giants. Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune


A cloud of dust, gas or both in space.


A small, irregular shaped body formed by colliding matter.

Geocentric Model

the model where the planets, sun, and moon orbit Earth

Heliocentric Model

the model where Earth and other planets orbit the sun

Claudius Ptolemy

Early Greek man who created a Geocentric model

Ptolemaic System

the Geocentric model that Ptolemy created with was not doubted for 13 centuries

Nicolaus Copernicus

man: Earth is a plant

Nicolaus Copernicus

man: proposed Heliocentric model of the solar system

Tycho Brahe

man: measured location of heavenly bodies (planets)

Tycho Brahe

man: had made very precise measurements and observations about solar system than any others

Johannes Kepler

man: mathematician and assistant to Brahe

Johannes Kepler

man: discovered 3 laws of planetary motion ([last name of man] Laws)

Kepler law #1

all planets orbit sun in ellipse

Kepler law #2

when a planet is closer to the sun in its orbit, it moves faster

Kepler law #3

T²=D³ (the time of a planets orbital period ² is proportional to the average distance³

Galileo Galilei

greatest scientist of Italian Renaissance

Galileo Galilei

discovered 4 large satellites of Jupiter

Galileo Galilei

discovered planets Earth-like

Galileo Galilei

discovered Venus had phases like moon

Galileo Galilei

discovered Sun had dark regions (sunspots)

Sir Isaac Newton

formulated law of universal gravitation

Sir Isaac Newton

every body in universe attracts to other bodies with a force that is directly proportional to their mass and inversely proportional to the ² of the distance between centers of mass

Law of universal gravitation

F=G(m₁ *m₂/r₂)


planets orbit the sun in an ______


then a planet is closer to sun it moves _____

Galileo Galilei

discovered moon was not smooth


a spin of a body about its axis


a orbit of a body about an object


Earth's axis tilt causes

29 ½ days

time from new moon --> new moon

27 1/3

days it takes moons orbit around earth

synodic month

new moon --> new moon is called

sidereal month

earth, moon, and star are all aligned

phases of the moon

new, waxing crescent, first quarter, waxing gibbous, full, waning gibbous, third quarter, waning crescent

sun moon earth

order of objects during solar eclipse

sun earth moon

order of objects during lunar eclipse


shadow when a full solar eclipse occurs


shadow when a full lunar eclipse occurs


(true or false) We only see one side of the moon.

Giant Impact Theory

a mars size meteoroid hit Earth and outside layer became moon (theory of how moon formed that is most accepted by people)


called inner most planet


some smooth terrain(resembling maria) - very dense (large iron core) - nighttime temp. = -173 degrees Celsius - noontime temp. = 427 degrees Celsius - greatest surface temperature extremes of any planet


small solid particle that travels through space


originates by interplanetary that was not gravitationally swept up by the planets during the formation of the solar system


forms when material from the asteroid belt


forms from the solid remains of comets that once traveled near earth's orbit

hailey's comet

most famous short period comet


meteoroids that vaporize before reaching earth's surface (phenomenon)


a meteoroid that actually reaches earth's surface


similar to earth in size, density, mass, and location


has many greenhouse gasses in the atmosphere, making it warmer than mercury


surface shaped by basaltic volcanism and tectonic activity


called the veiled planet


called the red planet


most obvious difference between the terrestrial and Jovian planets

density, chemical makeup, rate of rotation

3 other differences between terrestrial and Jovian planets

gas, rock, ice

3 substances that make up a planet

helium, hydrogen

some of the gases that make up a planet

silicate minerals, metallic iron

some rocks that make up a planet

ammonia, methane, carbon dioxide, water

some ices that make up a planet

hydrogen, helium, methane, carbon dioxide

some thick gases that make up Jovian atmospheres


Jovian planets have greater ________________ than terrestrial planets

Nebular Theory

the solar system was created by a rotating disk of dust an gases


fourth planet from the Sun; has polar ice caps, a thin atmosphere, and a reddish appearance caused by iron oxide in weathered rocks and soil


planet close to Earth that is covered with clouds


4th planet from the Sun. Is sometimes called the Red Planet. It makes one complete orbit around the Sun every 686.98 days. Rotates on its axis about the same speed as the Earth. It completes one rotation in about 24 hours and 37 minutes. Has seasons similar to our planet, but they last much longer. Has a total of 2 satellites (or moons).Has thin atmosphere, very cold, with polar ice caps. Has the largest volcano in the solar system. Olympus Mons. No active inner core


Giant among planets


Jupiter is ____ times bigger than all other planets and moons combined

hydrogen, helium

Atmosphere of Jupiter


planet gives of twice as much heat as it receives

rocky and metallic

Jupiter's core


How many moon does Jupiter have that have been discovered?

Io, Europa, Ganymede, Callisto

Jupiter's 4 main moons aka Galilean moons


one of the three volcanic active moons (Jupiter)


smallest Galilean moon and has icy surface


largest Jovian moon


outermost Galilean moon (crater density) like Earth's moon

fine dark particles

Jupiter's rings are made of


Elegant planet


most prominent about Saturn is its ____

Great Red Spot

cyclonic storm on Jupiter


a windy planet (not Neptune)


had small storms in atmosphere


How many moons does Saturn have?


a planet with very complex rings


small individual particles of ice and rock that float between Saturn's rings

A and B

the main rings of Saturn (thin, dense, bright)


outer most ring of Saturn (thicker, less dense)

Io, Earth, Triton

three volcanic active things


Saturn's largest moon

Titan and Triton

two moons that have substantial atmospheres


Saturn's moon that exhibits retrograde motion; it is likely that it planetesimals or meteoroid or asteroid that was picked up


The sideways planet


the planet who's orbit lies ⊥to axis of rotaion


the windy planet


planet with winds over 1000 km/h (the windiest planet of the solar system)


planet who had a great Dark spot about he size of earth (a cyclonic storm)


second largest moon (size of earth)


Planet X


smallest planet who's orbit is erratic and sometimes falls between Neptune and Uranus


considered to be the ninth planet from the Sun; has a solid icy-rock surface and a single moon, Charon

Kuiper Belt

a region of the solar system that is just beyond the orbit of Neptune and that contains small bodies made mostly of ice

Kuiper Belt

where short orbital comets come from

Oort Cloud

(astronomy) a hypothetical huge collection of comets orbiting the sun far beyond the orbit of Pluto, A spherical region of comets that surrounds the solar system out to more than 1,000 times the distance from the sun

Oort Cloud

other solar system where long period comets come from

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