View Full Version : Space is big

2006-Jul-05, 04:13 PM
Proportional representation of the solar system (http://devhed.com/solar-system/)

If you don't believe me, keep scrolling right until you get to Pluto.

2006-Jul-05, 08:34 PM

2006-Jul-05, 08:40 PM
I didn't recognize the constellations in the background? When was this picture taken?

2006-Jul-05, 08:49 PM
Space ain't so big. Look at how those "distant" stars whip past as you move between planets. (Strange stars, though. There appeared to be repetition in the patterns. I felt like I was rotating rather than translating.)

2006-Jul-05, 09:23 PM
Space ain't so big. Look at how those "distant" stars whip past as you move between planets. (Strange stars, though. There appeared to be repetition in the patterns. I felt like I was rotating rather than translating.)
Explains all those episodes of Star Trek (or the Windows screen saver).

2006-Jul-06, 02:47 AM
Cool link ToSeek. Thanks!

2006-Jul-06, 04:10 AM
I didn't recognize the constellations in the background? When was this picture taken?
:) Back when the sun was orange.

2006-Jul-06, 11:56 AM
It is real impressive, but I somehow lose the distance as I'm scrolling. It might be because there's no reference items in between.
Maybe if someone in Ill. can do the same with this model (http://www.bautforum.com/showthread.php?t=43668)
Instead of the star background, we can see an entire city and cornfield in the background. (40 miles? now that'll take a few frames)

2006-Jul-06, 01:16 PM
That's a nice page that I'll show to others. I also have a field about half a mile long that I could make a scale model in.

2006-Jul-06, 02:31 PM
I keep wanting to lay out a scale model on the highway just outside my subdivison, or the park that is alongside it. The highway is straighter. Problem is, I really only have about a mile of straight space and although I can find something around 38 millimeters in size for the sun, I have problems with just about everything else. Well, placards with a picture on it on a stake, that'd be alright. If I get a chance, I'll mark off the maximum straight distance and figger it out. But MAN is it gonna be hard to see the sun from a mile away.

Nah, my math is off by a factor of 10 or so I think, will have to hit it again later. Spending too many hours at the hospital and not enough with my bed.

Ken G
2006-Jul-06, 02:46 PM
Hang on, the distance to Pluto is about ten thousand times the radius of the Sun, so if you have a mile to work with, your Sun can be about 1 foot across.

2006-Jul-06, 03:39 PM
Pluto, according to the listed scale system website is 39.53 AUs. An Au accoring to google is 149,598,000,000 meters. My Parkville scale will be 1m = 1609 meters (about a mile according to google) so 1 PS meter unit is equal to 3,675,331,845.867meters and change. This puts Pluto at 1609 meters and the earth at 40.68 meters. The Sun which is 1.4 x 10^6 Km in diameter observed at this scale is 38 millimeters in diameter, the Earth (measly 12756 km) is .34 millimeters and Pluto (itty bitty) .0625 millimeters.

Then again, I can very well be wrong. But the sun is 1,400,000,000 meters in diameter and Pluto is 5,913,608,940,000,000 meters out there, thats a factor of 4,224,006.38 or double that if you're figurig radius instead of diameter. That's NOT 10 thousand times the radius.

I'm just using the measurements at http://www.bradley.edu/las/phy/astronomy/solar_system.html? and scaling them down, again, I can be wrong but the above is what I'm using, where is my Algebra mistake?

2006-Jul-06, 04:31 PM
Well, according to this website http://www.exploratorium.edu/ronh/solar_system/all_bodies.html my radii are correct but my diameters are 10 times smaller than should be. Algebra, ehhh, it's why I'm not an accountant. My bad handwriting is why I'm not a bookkeeper and anyone wanna guess why I'm not an English major?

2006-Jul-07, 05:42 AM
Thats a nice page. We have a solar system walk about a mile from my house.
They start out with a sign with a picture of the sun and some info on its size. Its about the size of a musk mellon. The walk is around 2 miles along the way you come across all the planets and they are scaled in relation to the sun. Its quite a walk from neptune to pluto. It really gives a decent sense of scale.

I once tried to do that with our galaxy but the planets and sun ended up smaller than atoms. Its really difficult to get your mind round how vast space really is.

2006-Jul-07, 06:34 PM
I visited Washington DC's Solar System walk--sun was a brass orb about 5 or so inches in diameter. Most planets were specks. The exhibit went along most of the length of the National Mall, ending a Pluto. At that scale, Alpha Centauri, the nearest star system, would be around Los Angeles. The nearest large galaxy (Andromeda) would be somewhere around the real Jupiter or Saturn. The radius of the observable universe is on the order of the real distance to one of the closer stars.

2006-Jul-07, 10:13 PM
It doesn't really take up that much of the Mall - just a couple of blocks' worth. It starts at the corner of the Air & Space Museum and extends almost to the "Castle." There's plenty of Mall after that.

Jason Thompson
2006-Jul-09, 12:21 AM
I made a scale model of the solar system ina field once, using a tennis ball mounted on a can of beer for the sun, and small slips of paper with tiny pencil drawings (well, drawings of the giants planets, dots for the others) of the planets with their moons slipped uder the ringpulls of other beer cans for the planets. I couldn't even fit Neptune in the field at that scale, and Pluto would have been across the road and in the next field....

This was at a party. The following morning one of the guests rose from his tent and, finding a free can of beer midway along his route to the barbecue where breakfast was being cooked up, proceeded to wreak havoc on the solar system by wrenching Saturn from its orbit.