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Other Members of Solar System

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Other Members of Solar System - Lesson Summary

Apart from the Sun and the planets, the solar system also consists of celestial bodies such as asteroids, meteoroids  and comets.

Asteroids are large pieces of rock or metal and rock that revolve around the Sun. They are found in the gap between the orbits of Jupiter and Mars. This gap is called the asteroid belt.

Comets revolve around the sun in highly elliptical orbits periodically, but their period of revolution is larger compared to that of planets. A comet appears with a bright head and a long tail. The tail of a comet is always directed away from the Sun. A comet is made up of rock, dust, water, ice and frozen gases.One of the most famous comets is the Halley’s comet, named after the discoverer. Its period of revolution is 76 earth years. 

Meteoroids are chunks of rock or particle of debris in our solar system. They are smaller than comets. When meteoroids enter the Earth's atmosphere they are called meteors. Most meteors burn up in the atmosphere, but if they survive the frictional heating and strike the surface of the Earth they are called meteorites. As a meteor glows brightly when it falls to the ground it is called a shooting star.

Artificial satellites are man-made and are launched from the Earth. Artificial satellites are used for transmission of television and radio signals, telecommunication, weather forecasting, navigation of ships and air planes, mapping natural resources, remote sensing and for defence purposes.

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