[meteorite-list] Re: Metorite list: Planet Perspective
From: David B Norris <DavidNorris_at_meteoritecentral.com>
Date: Thu Apr 22 09:41:46 2004
Chapter 2 of Burnham's Celestial Handbook, Volume 1 has several
interesting comparisons that I'll snip.
Page 14 - "The speed of light is close to 186,300 miles per second. At
this speed we could travel seven times around the Earth in one second. We
could reach the Moon in less than two seconds, the Sun in eight minutes, and
all the planets in a few hours. Traveling for a year at this speed, we
would cover a distance of slightly less than six trillion miles, and we
would find ourselves about a quarter of the way to the nearest star."
Page 14 - "The distance of the Earth from the Sun is Approximately 93
million miles, or about eight "light minutes," a distance which we will
dignify by a special title, the "astronomical unit" (AU). The most remote
planet, Pluto, is 40 times more distant from the sun than we are, and so we
may say that the the distance of Pluto is about 40 AU." ... "One light year
is equal to 63,000 AU. The nearest of the stars is 4.3 light years distant;
this is about 270,000 AU, or some 7,000 times the distance of Pluto. The
light from Pluto reaches the Earth in 5-1/2 hours; from the nearest star it
requires 4.3 years."
Page 20 - They are using a diagram of our Milky Way galaxy about 5
inches across. "... suppose we can enlarge the picture until it covers all
of North America. Then the billions of individual stars will appear as
pinpoint specks averaging about 600 feet apart. The Solar System - if we
can locate the exact spot to look for it - will be about two inches in
diameter, and the Sun and Earth will appear as two pinpoint dots about 1/30
inch apart. The Earth, in fact, will be totally invisible to the naked eye
on this scale, and we shall have to examine our super-enlarged picture with
a microscope to eventually locate the Earth as a sub-microscopic dot a few
millionths of an inch in diameter."
Next time you have to wait too long in a checkout lane at the grocery or
someone cuts in front of you in traffic, think about it. It makes those ev
ents in our everyday lives seem insignificant, which they are. AWESOME.
Happy New Year to EveryOne.
----- Original Message -----
Sent: Saturday, December 30, 2000 6:36 PM
Subject: [meteorite-list] Re: Metorite list: Planet Perspective
> Does anyone still have access to the "Perspective of Planets" that I read
> about ? It refers to the earth being a golf ball, the moon being a marble,
> 3-Ft. away, Mars being an apple 50-Ft. away Etc. And on to Pluto WAY out
> there, like 2 miles away and just an Orange or somthing. Lay people dont
> It" when it comes to perspective of the Solar System and are astonished
> you give it to them in terms that they understand. Id love to print this
> to memorize. Ballke, Bernd ?,. anyone ? Thanks Kris
> Meteorite-list mailing list
Received on Sun 31 Dec 2000 09:07:09 PM PST