# QUestion on distamce

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#### ben89

##### Guest
hi I"m Benny and this here is my first post.<br /><br />was reading a texbook on planetaries that said the sun is 93 thousend miles away and apart from earth (which ive no problem with.<br /><br />but farther down the paige it said the earth orbitz this same sun in an elliptic mannor, not circlic (circally I should say(<br /><br />I"m confused cuz the elliptic pic showed the earth closer at the suns poles and farther away at the eastside and westsied of the sun. so how can the distance be a round numbre like 93 thousend miles when the pic wasnt a constant circle?<br /><br />i direct my questin to the astronomer on cite.

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#### qso1

##### Guest
Welcome to the discussion board.<br /><br />In general, the 93,000,000 mile (149,669,000 Km) or 1 astronomical unit as it is known in astronomy is the distance cited for the Earth from the Sun. This is an average derived from the nearest Earth distance which I recall being around 91 million miles and the farthest distance being 94 million miles. Check the graphic I attached to see this illustrated better.<br /><br />Note Earths position in the first graphic, the date in the upper right box is September 22, 2005.<br /><br />On the next image, the Earth is shown where it will be on March 23, 2006.<br /><br />The green circle is its orbit and if you look at it in relation to the Sun, you can see its ellipsoid shape.<br /><br />The view in both graphics is millions of miles above the Suns (And Earths) north poles. <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p><strong>My borrowed quote for the time being:</strong></p><p><em>There are three kinds of people in life. Those who make it happen, those who watch it happen...and those who do not know what happened.</em></p> </div>

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#### qso1

##### Guest
I still have to fumble round with this board as far as images so here is the second image I mentioned in my first reply, hope this answers your question. <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p><strong>My borrowed quote for the time being:</strong></p><p><em>There are three kinds of people in life. Those who make it happen, those who watch it happen...and those who do not know what happened.</em></p> </div>

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#### ben89

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thank u for welcomming me. are u a cite monitor? <br /><br />but whys it 93 thousend miles if the distance aint all the same going around you know?<br /><br />dont see nothin yet. the image has to be aproved it says,

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#### ben89

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o its avereged out.<br /><br />those planets are really far. suns only thousend miles away tho tahts far also dont get me wrong,

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#### ben89

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thank u monitor qso1 4 the pix, there finally aproved. there diferent from the texbook pix. these show the orbitz 2 be circlic tho in reality there realy elliptic am i right?

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#### Saiph

##### Guest
the actual distance between the sun and earth is 93 <i>million</i> miles.<br /><br />The distance between mars and earth is averaged to 40 million, so the sun-mars seperation is ~130 million miles.<br /><br />The figures often quoted are averages. One reason nobody really nit-picks is that the values for planets only vary by a percent or less. <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p align="center"><font color="#c0c0c0"><br /></font></p><p align="center"><font color="#999999"><em><font size="1">--------</font></em></font><font color="#999999"><em><font size="1">--------</font></em></font><font color="#999999"><em><font size="1">----</font></em></font><font color="#666699">SaiphMOD@gmail.com </font><font color="#999999"><em><font size="1">-------------------</font></em></font></p><p><font color="#999999"><em><font size="1">"This is my Timey Wimey Detector.  Goes "bing" when there's stuff.  It also fries eggs at 30 paces, wether you want it to or not actually.  I've learned to stay away from hens: It's not pretty when they blow" -- </font></em></font><font size="1" color="#999999">The Tenth Doctor, "Blink"</font></p> </div>

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#### qso1

##### Guest
The images I posted didn't come out quite right. I'll try to update them if I can correct the aspect ratio. I have to make them less than 100K to post them.<br /><br />In any case, the planets orbits are elliptical which is why the distance varies. <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p><strong>My borrowed quote for the time being:</strong></p><p><em>There are three kinds of people in life. Those who make it happen, those who watch it happen...and those who do not know what happened.</em></p> </div>

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#### kmarinas86

##### Guest
Is is just me or did the title in all of the post of this thread change from "Question on distance" to "QUestion on distamce"<br /><br />ANYBODY KNOW WHO'S BEHIND THE CONSPRIACY I THINK I AM DELIRIOUS BUT then I COULD BE ON TO SOMETHING.!!!<br /><br /><br /><img src="/images/icons/smile.gif" /><img src="/images/icons/tongue.gif" /><img src="/images/icons/smile.gif" />

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#### qso1

##### Guest
Take a close look at the arrows I drew into this chart and note the upper left arrow points to where the Earth orbit line is slightly further from the Sun than the one pointing to the lower right portion of the Earth orbit line.<br /><br />This should clear it up. Earths orbit is elliptical but only slightly so, I forget the value and don't have a ref handy right now. <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p><strong>My borrowed quote for the time being:</strong></p><p><em>There are three kinds of people in life. Those who make it happen, those who watch it happen...and those who do not know what happened.</em></p> </div>

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#### ben89

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itm ust be real slight the diference cuz i dont see no diference too be honest/ thats prolly why it looks like a circle.<br /><br />thank u monitor qso1 for the grafics n explenations/

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#### ben89

##### Guest
respunder kmarena86 i didnt notice i typed distame, taht shoud have been distance, <br /><br />type fast sometimes so i make alot of mistakes

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#### ben89

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in respund to poster Siaph 93 milion miles is way too far/ thousends is much more graspable, it makes sense to cuz if u compare the sun with venus or jupiter the suns much bigger cuz its thousends of miles away<br /><br />i eyeball distances sometimes in class experriments. when i save enuff money i"ll get be a telescopic tool

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#### scull

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No, it's really 93 million miles; it's one AU. The sun looks big in the sky not because it's nearer (compared to your examples of Venus and Jupiter), but because it's a massive, massive object.<br />

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#### harmonicaman

##### Guest
<b>Ben -</b><br /><br />I agree that the universe is a bit messed up. Nothing is ever traveling in a straight line because "m" (mass) warps space, orbits are never perfectly circular and even rotating planets are not precisely spherical as they tend to have bulges around their equator.<br /><br />But by utilizing a few internet tools <i>you can easily find</i> the Earth-Sun distance for any given day of the year!<br /><br />The first thing you have to do is go to the <i>Perihelion</i><sup>1</sup> and <i>Aphelion</i> data table at the U.S. Naval Observatory website and write down the date of the Earth's Perihelion for that year.<br /><br />Then, using this chart, count how many days past Perihelion today's date is and mark that point on the graph. <br /><br /> (Note: The distance is incorrectly labelled, the decimal point is wrong - it should say hundreds of millions of kilometers I think!)<br /><br />This will give you an answer in millions of kilometers. To convert your answer into miles, use this handy internet kilometers to miles calculator.<br /><br /><br />1. Perihelion (Opposite of Aphelion) The point in the orbit of a planet or other astronomical body at which it comes closest to the Sun.<br />

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#### ben89

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thank u to poster harmonicman 4 explaning this 2 me/ dont like kilometers so i thank him 4 includin a convertion calculator into miles.<br /><br />was geting worried at seeing big words like "periphelion" n "aphelion" but think i followd what he said ok.<br /><br />harmonicman ur 2nd sentence says "nothing' travels in straigt line does that include light? i ask this cuz sunrays look pretty straigth (not 2 mention pretty as well.

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#### dark_energy

##### Guest
This includes light. Mass creates gravity, and gravity acts over an infinite distance. Light is affected by gravity and gravity can make light curve. <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> </div>

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#### qso1

##### Guest
Take a closer look at the last graphic and note where the orbit line goes in and out of the grid square the arrow points to at both ends. The elliptical nature of the orbit is barely perceptible when represented at this scale <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p><strong>My borrowed quote for the time being:</strong></p><p><em>There are three kinds of people in life. Those who make it happen, those who watch it happen...and those who do not know what happened.</em></p> </div>

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#### ben89

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to poster dark-energy i see what u say bout gravity curving but sunrays look straigth.

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#### ben89

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to monitor qso1 i can hardly see the diference so why do they even bother callin it eliptical when the grafic is almost a circle

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#### harmonicaman

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<b>Ben -</b><br /><br />Light <i>always</i> follows a straight path; it's space itself that is curved by mass. We experience this curvature of space as <i>gravity</i>.<br /><br />The orbit of the Earth is almost circular, so the elliptical orbit doesn't effect our every day lives; but for making very precise celestial measurements, we have to know exactly where we are.<br /><br />Here's a guide to Kepler's Law with some interesting ellipse graphics.

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#### Saiph

##### Guest
right, it's close to a circle, but it is a measurable difference, even by ancient greeks. <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p align="center"><font color="#c0c0c0"><br /></font></p><p align="center"><font color="#999999"><em><font size="1">--------</font></em></font><font color="#999999"><em><font size="1">--------</font></em></font><font color="#999999"><em><font size="1">----</font></em></font><font color="#666699">SaiphMOD@gmail.com </font><font color="#999999"><em><font size="1">-------------------</font></em></font></p><p><font color="#999999"><em><font size="1">"This is my Timey Wimey Detector.  Goes "bing" when there's stuff.  It also fries eggs at 30 paces, wether you want it to or not actually.  I've learned to stay away from hens: It's not pretty when they blow" -- </font></em></font><font size="1" color="#999999">The Tenth Doctor, "Blink"</font></p> </div>

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#### ben89

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thank u to harmonicsman 4 the kepler link, i"ll save it and show it to my sceince club when we meet wensday.<br /><br />now my question si if light is always straigth how come a rainbo arches like the st louis gateway. if gravity effects it then should the rainbow be flat on the ground?

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#### ben89

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to poster siaph thank u for a bit of history, i"m intrested in learning bout the ancient geeks too. i"m fast becomming the leader of our schools sceince club so ive to learn everthing

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