A Book About Space

by Mira Kanodia, age 8
A Book About Space Mira Kanodia is eight years old. Mira likes to read, write, take pictures, and draw. Mira lives in New York with her mom, Suniti, her dad, Nikhil and younger sister named Tara. Mira goes to Chapin, which is an all-girls school, and has learned to love writing at her school.

“The one star in our solar system is called the sun. It’s a big ball of fire, and if you come too close, it can burn you. It is very hot because there is a gas in it which makes it burn. 1.3 million Earths can fit in it! Woah! That’s a lot.”

              

Table of Contents

Solar System………………………….1

Greek Forms…………………………..2

The Milky Way Galaxy……………….3

NASA…………………………………..4

Earth’s History……………….………..5

Interesting Facts………………………6

The Solar System

Our Solar System has:

  • One star
  • Eight planets
  • Five dwarf planets
  • 181 moons
  • 566,000 asteroids
  • 3,100 comets

The one star in our solar system is called the sun. It’s a big ball of fire, and if you come too close, it can burn you. It is very hot because there is a gas in it which makes it burn. 1.3 million Earths can fit in it! Woah! That’s a lot.

The eight planets in our solar system include Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune. The temperature of Mercury is 800 degrees Fahrenheit or 430 degrees Celsius. The temperature of Venus is 864 degrees Fahrenheit or  462 degrees Celsius. The temperature of Earth is about 61 degrees Fahrenheit or 16 degrees Celsius. The temperature of Mars is -67 degrees Fahrenheit or -55 degrees Celsius. The temperature of Jupiter is -234 degrees Fahrenheit or -145 degrees Celsius. The temperature of Saturn is -288 degrees Fahrenheit or -178 degrees Celsius. The temperature of Uranus is -357 degrees Fahrenheit or -216 degrees Celsius. The temperature of Neptune is -353 degrees Fahrenheit or -214 degrees Celsius.

There are five dwarf planets in our solar system known to us. A dwarf planet is a space object which looks like a small planet but doesn’t have all the requirements. The five dwarf planets that we know today include Haumea, Makemake, Eris, Pluto, and Ceres.

Pluto used to be a planet, but then astronauts thought that it was too small and that it did not have all the requirements of a planet. It does not “clear the neighborhood” of its orbit, which means it bumps into things while it’s orbiting, and the rule is that a planet cannot bump into anything while it’s orbiting.

Mercury and Venus don’t have any moons. Earth has one, and Mars has two. Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune have many moons. The Earth’s moon is 2,158 miles. The Earth’s moon affects Earth, because the moon’s gravity pulls up water from the ocean, causing tides to form. Some planets have moons because huge rocks bumped into them, which caused a little part of them to come out and make a moon. But some planets don’t have a moon, because it didn’t happen to them.

Asteroids are basically big rocks that float all around space and sometimes come crashing into planets and stars. Asteroids are formed when two planets bump into each other. The parts that come out become asteroids. They look like huge rocks floating in the air. They go from floating to crashing when they bump into planets. About once a year, a huge asteroid hits Earth. When an asteroid comes crashing into Earth, it crashes above the sky called the atmosphere. We don’t notice it, because it’s so far above us, and it doesn’t have time to hit us.

A comet is basically a big, ball of fire in the front with a tail following behind it like a plane. It’s very colorful. When comets come crashing into Earth, they set on fire. This causes it to become a shooting star. It’s always moving. It looks sparkly and tie-dye.

 

Greek Forms

  • The Greek form of Mercury is Hermes.
  • The Greek form of Venus is Aphrodite.
  • Earth is the only planet in our solar system which does not have a Greek form.
  • The Greek form of Mars is Ares.
  • The Greek form of Jupiter is Zeus.
  • The Greek form of Saturn is Kronos.
  • Uranus is already named by a Greek.
  • The Greek form of Neptune is Poseidon.

A Greek form is, in this case, a planet but in another language. The planets we have, when they’re in their Roman form, is the name that we usually call them. Planets were given their names thousands of years ago. The Roman people who discovered them are the ones who named them. The Roman forms and Greek forms are alike, because Jupiter is Zeus, and Zeus is the head of all the gods and goddesses, and Jupiter is the biggest planet. So, Jupiter is basically the head of all the planets.

The Milky Way Galaxy

It travels at approximately 515,000 miles per hour — that’s really fast! It is made up of gas and dust called nebula, planets, stars, asteroids, comets, and meteors. It was made around 14 billion years ago. It looks sort of like a spiral with lots of sparkles on it. New stars are pretty much always forming inside the galaxy. In the center of the MIlky Way, there is something called a black hole, which is pretty much a black hole that can suck you in, even if you are far away. There are many black holes. This might be hard to believe, but it is a lot bigger than our sun. This black hole started off really small, but then, by the amount of gas that came into it, it became huge, and now it’s like a giant! It swallows up all of the stars it can get.

The measurements recently taken say that it is 400 billion to 780 billion times the sun’s mass. That is so much! The Milky Way is 100,000 light years wide (1 light year is 600 trillion miles). The Milky Way has many temperatures, since the Sun is really hot and Neptune is really cold. Since they’re both in it, that means that it has different temperatures. The Milky Way orbits super, super, super fast, so even the fastest thing in the world can’t keep up! In the city, you wouldn’t really see as many stars in the sky, but if you go to some places like the mountains or the country, you would see part of the Milky Way. We are in it, so you would see other parts. At the center of the Milky Way is a huge bulge. The Milky Way is filled with gas, stars, dust, other planets, and dwarf planets. The bulge is why you can only see small parts of the galaxy. Dust and gas inside are too thick, so you cannot even see the bulge.

Scientists think that 90% of our Milky Way’s weight has dark matter, which we can’t even see. The Milky Way is so big that it has over 200 billion stars! But it’s not exactly 200 billion, because like humans, stars form every second and die every second. The galaxy has grown so big, because it’s taking in other galaxies to grow to its formal size, and it’s doing so right now. All the pictures that you’ve seen of the Milky Way on the internet aren’t really the Milky Way. It’s either a photograph of another galaxy or a painting. We can’t take a picture of our own galaxy, because we’re already in it.

 

NASA

NASA stands for National Aeronautics and Space Administration. It is a company which launches rocketships into space to get information about space. The head of NASA is named Charles Bolden. NASA works for America and has launched a total of 166 rockets, and has gotten a lot, a lot, a lot of information. Two of the names of rockets that NASA have launched recently include Falcon 9 and Antares. The first rocket that NASA ever launched to the moon was Apollo 11. The people in the rocket were Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin. They took a trip to the moon to get some material from it and bring it back to Earth. It took about three days to get there. They stayed on the moon for about two hours and 15 minutes outside of the rocket.

On the moon, Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin ate fruit strips, corn chowder, ham-salad sandwiches, tuna salad, and all of this food was dry dehydrated. The lunar spacesuits were made to make the astronauts be safe and healthy. They could wear it for about 115 hours.

 

Earth’s History

Before the Solar System was created, it was just a bunch of rocks, gas, air, and dust. Then, it started to rotate really fast and started to come together and form comets and asteroids. The asteroids and comets started to spin more and more and turned into eight planets and a sun. Then, a part broke off of the Earth and became our moon. All of the lighter stuff came to the outside of Earth, and all the heavier stuff came to the inside of Earth. When two rocks banged together, it formed a mountain. Volcanoes happened because lava came through the mountains.

When Earth was just created, any plants, animals, or people were not able to survive. When Earth was still young, instead of having seven little continents (North America, South America, Europe, Asia, Africa, Australia, and Antarctica), there was one big continent called Pangea. One hundred eighty million years ago, Pangea broke up into the seven continents that we have today. If we lived back then, we wouldn’t be able to feel it moving or see it, because it was happening so slowly. Then, when little pieces of bacteria and chemicals formed, they helped plants stay alive, which helped plants and animals live.

The first dinosaurs were born 225 million years ago. Sixty-five million years ago, dinosaurs went extinct.

Many years after that, humans came. They’re the smartest species to exist, even now. They didn’t have all the stuff back then that we have now, such as chairs, tables, phones, electricity, paper, pens, and other things like that. Early humans lived at the same time as mammoths and other things like that.

 

Interesting Facts

  • If you were out in space, and no one was talking and you didn’t have a speaker, everything would be silent, which means you wouldn’t hear anything!
  • No one can possibly know how many stars are in the universe. There are over billions, and billions, and billions, and billions (which means there are a lot).
  • The footprints of the Apollo astronauts will probably stay on the moon for 100 million years.
  • 99% of our solar system is made out of the sun. That means the sun is really, really big.
  • When two pieces of the same kind of metal touch in space, they will be stuck together forever.
  • A day on Venus is a year on Earth. That means that Venus’s days are really long.
  • You become taller when you’re in space, because of microgravity. Microgravity means a very small amount of gravity, and that’s what stretches people’s spines out.
  • Neptune’s wind moves the fastest than any other planet. It moves 1600 mph!
  • The hottest planet isn’t the closest one to the sun. Even though Mercury is the closest to the sun, Venus is the hottest planet. This is because Venus has a lot of gases in its atmosphere, which causes the “Greenhouse Effect”.
  • The word “astronaut” comes from the Greek word “astron” which means “star” and “nautes” which means “sailor”. So, the word “astronaut” actually means “star sailor”.
  • You can’t cry in space, because the tears won’t come out.
  • Nebula is a cloud where stars are created. It can come in all shapes and sizes.
  • If a star comes too close to a black hole, it will be broken apart.
  • The Solar System has been here for about 4.6 billion years Scientists think that it going to last another five billion years.
  • Enceladus is one of Saturn’s smallest moons. It reflects about 90% of sunlight, making it more reflective than snow.
  • NASA’s Crater Observation and Sensing Satellite (LCROSS) have found evidence that there is water on Earth’s moon.
  • The sun makes a full rotation every 25 – 35 days.

 

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