Seismic Wave Data

A seismic wave travels through a planetary body, and bears information about the conditions along its path. Seismic waves are mechanical waves in that the wave proceeds via the direct push of an atom or molecule on its neighbours. Other mechanical waves include sound waves in the air and the ripples on the surface of a pond. There are several types of seismic wave. Rayleigh and Love waves, rather like water ripples, can exist only at an abrupt change of density, such as at the surface of a...

Summary of Chapter

The Solar System consists of the Sun, nine planets with their satellites and rings, many asteroids (about 109 greater than 1 km across), the Edgeworth-Kuiper belt (more than 105 objects larger than 100 km), 1012-1013 small icy-rocky bodies in the Oort cloud, and an interplanetary medium of tenuous gas and small solid bodies ranging in size down to less than 10-6m. Meteoroids are small rocky bodies, and those that fall to Earth are called meteorites, These have provided much information about...

Orbits of Solar System Bodies

1.4.1 Kepler's Laws of Planetary Motion Each planet orbits the Sun as shown in plan view in Figure 1.5. As a crude approximation, the planetary orbits can be represented as circles centred on the Sun, with all the circles in the same plane, and each planet moving around its orbit at a constant speed the larger the orbit, the slower the speed. A far better approximation is encapsulated in three empirical rules called Kepler's laws of planetary motion. These were announced by the German...