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Planet Earth

"Earth is the third planet from the Sun and largest of the terrestrial planets. Surprisingly, while it is only the fifth largest planet in terms of size and mass, it is the densest (5,513 kg/m3) of all the planets. Earth is the only planet in the solar system not named after a mythological being. Instead, its name is derived from the Old English word "ertha" and the Anglo-Saxon word "erda" which means ground or soil.

Earth was formed somewhere around 4.54 billion years ago and is currently the only known planet to support life - and lots of it."

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Upon Arrival

Although most of the Earth’s surface lies beneath its oceans, the remaining “dry” surface is quite remarkable. When comparing the Earth to other solid bodies in the Solar System, its surface stands out due to its lacking impact craters. It is not that the Earth has been spared the numerous impacts by small bodies; rather, it is because the evidence of these impacts has been erased. Although there are many geological processes responsible for this, the two most important are weathering and erosion. In many ways these two mechanisms can be thought of as working in tandem.

Weathering is the breaking down of surface structures into smaller pieces by the atmosphere. Moreover, there are two types of weathering: chemical and physical. An example of chemical weathering is acid rain. An example of physical weathering is abrasion of river beds caused by rocks suspended in flowing water. The second mechanism, erosion, is simply the movement of weathered particles by water, ice, wind or gravity.

Thus, impact craters have been “smoothed out” through weathering and erosion by being broken apart and redistributed to other areas on the Earth’s surface.

Two other geological mechanisms have helped to shape the Earth’s surface. The first is volcanic activity. This process consists of the releasing of magma (molten rock) from the Earth’s interior through a rupture in the its crust. Some effects of volcanic activity can be the resurfacing of Earth’s crust or formation of islands (think of the Hawaiian Islands). The second mechanism is orogeny, or the formation of mountains through the compression of tectonic plates. An example of mountains created through this process is the Rocky Mountains.

The Seasons and Their Reason!

"During the year, the seasons change depending on the amount of sunlight reaching the Earth as it revolves around the Sun.

The seasons are caused as the Earth, tilted on its axis, travels in a loop around the Sun each year. Summer happens in the hemisphere tilted towards the Sun, and winter happens in the hemisphere tilted away from the Sun. As the Earth travels around the Sun, the hemisphere that is tilted towards or away from the Sun changes.

The hemisphere that is tilted towards the Sun is warmer because sunlight travels more directly to the Earth’s surface so less gets scattered in the atmosphere. That means that when it is summer in the Northern Hemisphere, it is winter in the Southern Hemisphere. The hemisphere tilted towards the Sun has longer days and shorter nights. That’s why days are longer during the summer than during the winter.

In general, the further away from the equator you travel, the cooler summer and winter temperatures become. At the equator there are no seasons because each day the Sun strikes at about the same angle. Every day of the year the equator receives about 12 hours of sunlight. The poles remain cool because they are never tilted in a direct path of sunlight. Much light is scattered by the atmosphere before reaching the Earth surface at the poles. During midwinter, when a pole is tilted away from the Sun, there is no daylight at all. The sun never rises! However, during the summer, a pole receives sunlight all the time and there is no night!"

Rotation and Revolution

"The moon and Earth both revolve and rotate on their way around in our solar system, but what is the difference between the two movements?

Rotation is when a planet or moon turns all the way around or spins on its axis one time. The axis of rotation is an imaginary line going from the north pole to the south pole. When a planet or moon travels once around an object this is considered a revolution. On Earth, a rotation is pretty short - it happens once a day! It is the rotation that makes the sun appear to come up in the morning and set at night. On Earth, a revolution is quite a bit longer - one year!

The moon and Earth both revolve and rotate on their way around in our solar system, but what is the difference between the two movements?

The moon is a little different. The moon rotates once about every 27 days, and revolves once about every 27 days. So every time the moon goes around Earth it turns around one time. That is why the moon always looks the same - we only ever see one side of it! Another strange thing is that if we lived on the Moon and thought of days and years the same way we do on Earth, a day AND a year would be the same length! Since the rotation and revolution times are the same, the length of a day and the length of a year are identical.

Nuclear Fusion

"In the Sun, massive gravitational forces create the right conditions for fusion, but on Earth they are much harder to achieve. Fusion fuel – different isotopes of hydrogen – must be heated to extreme temperatures of the order of 100 million degrees Celsius, and must be kept dense enough, and confined for long enough, to allow the nuclei to fuse. The aim of the controlled fusion research program is to achieve 'ignition', which occurs when enough fusion reactions take place for the process to become self-sustaining, with fresh fuel then being added to continue it. Once ignition is achieved, there is net energy yield – about four times as much as with nuclear fission."

Suggested Activities for your visit!


Sydney, Australia;

This metropolis offers more than just a dizzying array of landmarks (e.g., the Opera House and the Sydney Harbour Bridge). Sydney boasts a warm, sunny climate ideal for enjoying the city's beaches. The sands at Coogee and Bondi draw locals and tourists alike.

Rio de Janeiro;

As the upcoming host of the 2016 Olympic Games, Rio is arguably South America's hottest destination — and not just for its warm weather. The famous Christ the Redeemer statue presides over Copacabana Beach. And you'll be hard-pressed to find a livelier event than Rio's Carnival.


From swimming in Lake Zurich in the summer to skiing the Alps in the winter, Zurich attracts visitors year-round. Delectable pastry shops abound, as do museums, churches, and shops in Bahnhofstrasse. At night, check out the bars in edgy Zurich West.

Things to do;

Go to the movies, Go to the mall, to the beach; Go skiing, Snowboarding, kayaking, canoeing, mountain climbing, swimming. You can play soccer, hockey. baseball, softball, cheerleading, and football. There is so much to do and so much to see!

Spherical? What!

Did you know? A planet's gravity pulls equally from all sides. Gravity pulls from the center to the edges like the spokes of a bicycle wheel. This makes the overall shape of a planet a sphere, which is a three-dimensional circle.

The Formation of our Solar System

A light year is a unit of astronomical distance equivalent to the distance that light travels in one year, which is 9.4607 × 1012 km (nearly 6 trillion miles). The force that is responsible for the formation of the solar system is gravity! The Solar system formed about 4.6 billion years ago when gravity pulled together low-density cloud of interstellar gas and dust (called a nebula).