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The Solar System

The solar system is made up of the Sun, the planets and dwarf planets and their known moons, asteroids, comets, dust and gas. The planets, asteroids, and comets travel around the Sun, the center of our solar system.

Most of the bodies in the solar system travel around the Sun along nearly circular paths. All the planets travel about the Sun in the same direction (the opposite of a clock when viewed from above).

Solar system formation began billions of years ago, when gases and dust began to come together to form the Sun, planets, and other bodies of the solar system.

Last modified July 15, 2010 by Randy Russell.

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Windows to the Universe, a project of the National Earth Science Teachers Association, is sponsored in part by the National Science Foundation and NASA, our Founding Partners (the American Geophysical Union and American Geosciences Institute) as well as through Institutional, Contributing, and Affiliate Partners, individual memberships and generous donors. Thank you for your support! NASA AGU AGI NSF