Do you find yourself wondering how large the universe actually is, and how miniscule we are in the larger scheme of things? If recent feats made in space discovery using telescopes weren’t enough, an astronomer’s animation that shows the true scale of our solar system might help put things in perspective.
James O’Donoghue, an astronomer from the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) recently shared a brief video on his Twitter that begins with Ceres, a dwarf planet situated 488,306,842 kilometers away from Earth. It then slowly takes us on a journey of our solar system, zooming out on the Sun before closing.
Celestial objects to scale in size, rotation speed and tilt 🪐 pic.twitter.com/KCfjHDABdF
— Dr. James O’Donoghue (@physicsJ) April 26, 2022
Besides showing us a glimpse of how giant some planets in the solar system are, the animation also shows the spinning speed of planets. When the animation zooms past Jupiter, you’ll realise how fast the gas giant spins compared to our tiny Earth.
For perspective, Earth is 12,742 kilometres (7,918 miles) wide. In contrast, Jupiter has a diameter of 139,820 kilometres (86,880 miles).
Watch the animation below:
According to Science Alert, the sizes, tilts, and rotations are all to scale in the video. The positions have been compressed though, for planets have been pushed closer together to generate a short video clip, with a running time of only 45 seconds.
Nield, D. (2022). Astronomer’s Mind-Blowing Animation Shows The True Scale of Our Solar System. ScienceAlert.