Technically, Earth Does Not Orbit Around the Sun
Posted by Ross Pomeroy August 5, 2014
The discovery that Earth revolves around the Sun was revolutionary. It fundamentally changed how we viewed the cosmos, as well as ourselves.
But the Earth does not revolve around the Sun. At least, not exactly. Time to get pedantic.
"Technically, what is going on is that the Earth, Sun and all the planets are orbiting around the center of mass of the solar system," writes Cathy Jordan, a Cornell University Ask an Astronomer contributor.
"The center of mass of our solar system very close to the Sun itself, but not exactly at the Sun's center."
Every single object in the solar system, from the gargantuan sun to the tiniest speck, exerts a gravitational pull on everything else. The solar system is basically a massive game of tug of war, and all of the yanking balances out at a specific point: the center of mass, or "barycenter." Everything in the solar system orbits around that point. Sometimes, it's almost smack dab at the Sun's center. Right now, the barycenter is just outside the Sun's surface. But it's constantly changing depending upon where the planets are in their orbital paths.
Because the Sun holds 99.87% of all the mass in the solar system, it's always going to win the tug of war. Even if all the planets were perfectly lined up on one side of the Sun, the center of mass would be just 800,000 kilometers off the surface of the Sun. That sounds like a lot, but remember, our solar system is big! Such a barycenter would be roughly 70 times closer to the Sun than the closest planet to the Sun, Mercury.
An even better illustration for center of mass is the binary star system. When two stars of comparable mass cohabit the same corner of space, they orbit about a point between each other.
However, rather than play a billion-year game of cosmic tag, more often than not, binary stars will take an elliptical orbit!
The rest of the universe certainly doesn't revolve around the Earth, but, like so many topics in science, it's an oversimplification to say that everything orbits around the Sun.
Technically, Earth Does Not Orbit Around the Sun
Chlorophyll? More like BOREaphyll!
ClevelandCursed - Chlorophyll? More like BOREaphyll!AmIright?
But if I get on a plane does the sun come to me?
This is the way they have discovered planets around other stars. Seeing the "wobble" of the star indicates an orbiting body. Amazing they can figure out the number and size of the planets based on precise calculations of the stars movement.
Saudi Cleric Reveals The Sun Rotates Around The Earth
The Huffington Post UK | By Paul Vale
A Saudi Arabian cleric has made a groundbreaking discovery that could redefine science in the 21st century –- the Earth does not rotate. What's more, the sun is orbiting the static body, not the other way around.
The breakthrough was made by Sheikh Bandar al-Khaibari, who delivered his thesis during a recent lecture in the United Arab Emirates, having been asked by a student about the movement of the planet.
Reported by al Arabiya, the Sheikh replied that Earth is "stationary and does not move," explaining his research by noting that airplanes would not be able to reach their destination were the Earth spinning on its axis.
The newspaper said the Sheikh went on to dismiss the traditional Copernican astronomical model, insisting that any science countering his "stationary" theory, namely NASA's lunar missions, was fabricated by Hollywood.
Neither NASA nor the European Space Agency has yet to comment on the preacher's remarkable discovery.
10 imponderable scientific questions the Saudi clergy should investigate:
Can people walk on clouds?
Where do babies come from?
Can a person jump over the moon using a bouncy castle?
Does the ocean have a plug at the bottom?
Why is snow cold?
Why is lightning followed by a scary noise?
Can dogs speak Italian?
Why are mountains so big?
Do airplanes use magic to fly?
Do catfish have eyebrows?
Hmmm. Not sure a Saudi Cleric could be wrong in the ways of astronomical science.
Might have to rethink things....
MMAdotCOM - How do planes reach their destination if earth rotating at hundreds of miles per hour?Once planes reach altitude they just hover there while the Earth spins into position.
MMAdotCOM - How do planes reach their destination if earth rotating at hundreds of miles per hour?Gravity. The plane is falling with the earth.
For exanple. A skydiver doesn't fall straight Down. They fall in an arch
It's explained well, and simply, here.
What if there's another, identical earth in exactly the same orbit as ours, but on the opposite side of the sun? We would never know.
Master_Blaster - What if there's another, identical earth in exactly the same orbit as ours, but on the opposite side of the sun? We would never know.
What if your doppelganger on that planet asked the above question at the exact same time that you did?
How does that gravitational fluctuation affect our weather and incoming solar radiation?