Lost in Space – Tour of Our Solar System ‘Review’


Map of Our Solar System

Map of Our Solar System

(Map of Our Solar System)

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Welcome back My Dear Readers to The Other Shoe. Welcome to a review edition of ‘Lost In Space’. Last week we completed the series ‘Tour of Our Solar System’ with the publication of Jupiter. Today I am going to share a look back over all of the editions of ‘Lost in Space’ that made up the series ‘Tour of Our Solar System’. From looking at the ‘Likes’ and the traffic reports it is easy to see that this sub-series within ‘Lost in Space’ was a huge success.

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That is why, today, I am revisiting each and every article of the tour to share some of the great images and science. If you happen to miss this series, this is a great chance to get in on the fun. If you did catch the Tour series, but perhaps missed an issue or two, this is the chance to see them all! Starting back on June 9th this article series has, now, spanned four months from first edition to review.

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So, now, without further adieu I give you ‘Tour of Our Solar System’ the review!

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Enhanced Color Image of Mercury

Enhanced Color Image of Mercury

(Mercury)

  • Lost in Space – Solar Tour #1 – Mercury : “This edition will server as the introduction to the series and images from the very first planet on our tour, Mercury. The innermost planet of our solar system, Mercury is the smallest planet in our solar system. Only 15,329 km in equatorial circumference and has a radius of just 1,516 miles. Mercury orbits the Sun in just over 87 days, yet it takes 58 days fifteen hours and thirty minutes to rotate on its axis! Whereas Earth takes just twenty-four hours to rotate on its axis.” And, just like that, I started what was to be a four month and several hundred page article series. Looking back, I am now thinking it might have been a little more interesting if I had started with the Sun, Sol. There is a lot of new science and NASA/JPL has a space craft focused just on Sol, right now. Well, as they say ‘Hindsight is 20/20!’ This is one of the best reasons for these ‘reviews’. In looking back, I can see much better the way forward for future articles and future article series. This ‘Tour of Our Solar System’ was a resounding success, from my evaluations and traffic reports, but there is always room for improvement, right? Mercury was a great start… but what came next… well, the only planet named after a woman, right?
Hemispheric View of Venus Centered at the North Pole

Hemispheric View of Venus Centered at the North Pole

(Venus)

  • Lost In Space – Tour of Our Solar System – #2 Venus : “Venus is known as the ‘Sister Planet’ of Earth. This is due to the fact that Venus is closest to Earth in; size, orbit of the sun, gravity and bulk composition. Venus orbits the sun in just 224.7 days. Now, most planets in our solar system rotate, on their axis, in an anti-clockwise direction, also known as a retrograde rotation or ‘orbit’. Further, Venus rotates the slowest of all the planets taking a full 243 Earth Days to complete on rotation. That means that a single day on Venus would last 243 days.” It was with this edition of the Tour that it dawned on me. There are a lot of incredible and NEW images of all the planets, since last I scoured the internet. Take, for an example, the image above. I had no idea that NASA/JPL had color images of Venus that showed the continents! I had just begun, our adventure Tour, and I was already amazed at what I was finding to share with You, My Dear Readers!
The Kuiper Belt with Haley’s Comet Path Marked

The Kuiper Belt with Haley’s Comet Path Marked

(The Kuiper Belt with Haley’s Comet Path Marked)

  • Lost in Space – Tour of Our Solar System #3 : “We leave the orbit of the planet of our birth, to pull our Ship of the Stars into orbit of our nearest planet. Now, as many of you, My Dear Readers, know we visit this planet every single week. We visit with my series of articles names ‘The Mars Report’. Just click on the link, behind you, and check out the latest edition of this wonderful series. Now, we leave the orbit of Mars, headed for our next solar destination. However, to get to our next destination of Jupiter we must pass through the ‘Asteroid Belt’!” My Dear Readers it was with this edition of the ‘Tour of Our Solar System’ that I drew us away from some mundane ‘Middle School Like’ review of the planets in our solar system, and turned us toward an adventure among the stars! Grabbing the navigational controls of our ‘Ship of the Stars’ I steered us away from the terrestrial planets and out to the very outer limits of our solar system to the ‘Kuiper Belt’ and the ‘Oort Cloud’! This is when this series became very interesting, and fun! From this edition forward each and every edition was an adventure in exploration and discovery. That is what made this series so great.
Kuiper Belt Objects by Size

Kuiper Belt Objects by Size

 (Dwarf Planets of the Kuiper Belt)

  • Lost In Space – Tour of Our Solar System #4 : “We now guide our Ship of the Stars to the most familiar of all of the Dwarf Planets… PLUTO! Again, and I hate to belabor a point, when I was a boy we were taught that Pluto was a planet! Every science class I went into there was a huge chart of the NINE planets, with Pluto at the very edge. Funny that, when I was a boy there were nine planets and 48 states. Now, there are 50 states and Eight planets. L Well, Pluto may well be a Dwarf Planet, but I am going to give it the royal treatment in this article. Our first image of Pluto (below) was taken by the Hubble Space Telescope and shows Pluto and its three of its five moons.” I mean really just how many of you, My Dear Readers, had even heard of Makemake before this the ‘Tour of Our Solar System’? How many of us knew that there were so many ‘Dwarf Planets’ with their own moons? That, out there beyond the Asteroid Belt, fliriting with the edge of the Kuiper Belt was (nearly) a whole other ‘Solar System’ for us to discover? My Dear Readers it was right about this time that I began to realize that I had stumbled into something grand. That by grabbing the controls of our ‘Ship of the Stars’ and navigating it to the very outer limits of our solar system, that we would share in such wonder, and awe. … My Dear Readers… THIS is why I do what I do. Why I chose to write and publish this blog… WONDER!
NEPTUNE

NEPTUNE

(Neptune)

  • Lost in Space – Solar System Tour – NEPTUNE : “Today our subject of ‘Lost in Space’ is the blue icy Giant Neptune! Neptune was named for the Greek God of the seas and earthquakes. Neptune was the first planet discovered by mathematical projection rather than empirical observation. Alexis Bouvard noted unexpected changes in the orbit of Uranus, leading to his mathematical discovery of Neptune. However, Galileo included Neptune in drawings of the solar system he made in 1612.” Pulling away from the very edge of our solar system, away from the Kuiper Belt and the Oort Cloud. Navigating our ‘Ship of the Stars’ back towards the Terrestrial planets and the warmth of Sol. We come to the tail end of the Jovian Giant planets, Neptune. My Dear Readers the more I look at this Tour, the more I review my work and thee images. The more I realize that, without even thinking, I managed to publish something great. That merely in the pursuit of entertaining and informing you, My Dear Readers, I stumbled upon a path that lead to something great. This is not the first time, this has happened with this blog, and it will not be the last. I am just glad that today I wrote this review… and I shared it with you!
False-color' Image of Uranus and its Ring

False-color’ Image of Uranus and its Ring

(Uranus ‘False Color’ Showing Ring)

  • Lost in Space – Solar System Tour – Uranus : “Uranus has TWENTY-SEVEN moons! That’s right twenty-seven moons orbit our current star of ‘Lost in Space’! Now, that does kind of pale in comparison to; Jupiter’s SIXTY-THREE moons, and Saturn’s SIXTY-ONE moons. But, when comparing Neptune’s thirteen moons to Uranus’ twenty-seven moons, one can see that it would be hard to mistake Uranus for Neptune if you could see their moons. Below is an image of some of the twenty-seven moons that orbit Uranus. The names of the five largest moons are; Miranda, Ariel, Umbriel, Titania, and Oberon. There is, also, Puck, Corderllia, Belinda, Ophellia, Portia, Bianca, Desdemona, Cressida, Juliet, Rosalind, Cupis, Sycorax, Perdita, Caliban, Prospero, Trinculo, Setebos, Margaret (my Mon’s name), Mab, Ferdinand, Francisco and Stephano” Twenty-Seven moons… Fifty moons… Sixty-Four moons… These are the what dreams are made of. How can one not dream when they, daily, look to the stars and see dozens of moons? How can a writer (or a Reader for that matter) spend time… hours upon hours, looking and writing and publishing content like this, and not get swept away? I did! You see, My Dear Readers, science is not ‘cold hard lifeless facts and figures’. Science is wonder and awe at the worlds all around us. For when our heads are among the stars, our hearts must fly, too. I love taking you all here, My Dear Readers, over the past four years… I have really enjoyed our time together, our discoveries, and the pure joy of discovery. From the very beginning, THIS is what I had to share… and what I wanted to share.
Saturn as Seen by Hubble Space Telescope

Saturn as Seen by Hubble Space Telescope

(Saturn)

  • Lost In Space – Saturn : “Before we get too far into the great images, and the accompanying narrative, let me post a few facts about our Jovian brother. Saturn is the sixth planet from the Sun and the second largest planet in the Solar System, after Jupiter. Named after the Roman god of agriculture, its astronomical symbol represents the god’s sickle. With a surface area of 16.49 billion sq miles (42.7 billion km²), with a radius of 36,184 miles (58,232 km), Saturn boasts a mass of 568.3E24 kg (95.16 Earth mass). The relative gravity of Saturn is 10.44 m/s² and this Jovian giant rotates around Sol from a distance of 890,700,000 miles. That is Saturn according to the science. Now, let’s get to know Saturn visually.” What picture of our solar system would be complete without the wonder of Saturn? The first the original the one and only ‘Lord of the Rings’! Saturn hangs in the summer sky like a giant lollipop of scientific candy. I cannot think of a single astronomer that had not been drawn to their future discipline by the awe and majesty of the Jovian Giant Saturn. This edition, of the ‘Tour of Our Solar System’ is one with the most images and the longest. My love for this planet is well known, and if I were to be able to visit any planet, but Earth, it would be Saturn!
Jupiter as Seen by Cassini

Jupiter as Seen by Cassini

(Jupiter)

  • Lost In Space – Solar System Tour – Jupiter : “The third brightest object in the night sky, coming after our Moon and Venus, Jupiter is bright enough to cast shadows here on Earth! Jupiter is primarily compassed of hydrogen gas, with helium coming in a close second. Jupiter’s upper atmosphere is comprised of a hydrogen/helium mixture as follows; 88–92% hydrogen and 8–12% helium by percent volume. For some that mixture might look a little… familiar. However, Jupiter would need to be about 75 times as massive to fuse hydrogen. Although there are dwarf stars that have a circumference smaller that Jupiter’s.” Third largest planet in our solar system, Jupiter is the home of the ‘Giant Red Spot’. This Jovian Gas Giant lies directly across the Asteroid Belt that separates our ‘Terrestrial Planets’ from the Jovian Gas Giants and the Dwarf Planets. You see, My Dear Readers, I am just flat out amazed how our solar system has separated itself. Separated itself and drew a line made of rocks and dust and pieces of dead stars. Where, on one side, there were planets with hard ground and continents and skies. Where, on the other side, dwell gargantuan planets made of gas and ice, and icy gases. It is wonder and awe, it is beauty and grace. It is everything we look for in ourselves and in others. It is what we yearn for from faith, and long for in our souls.

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That brings us to the end of this review of this incredible series within a series. With that I bring to an end ‘Tour of Our Solar System’ as a part of the well-known and loved series ‘Lost in Space’! Now, when next I publish this wondrous series, ‘Lost in Space’ will appear in the month of October and we will return to viewing galaxies and nebula as seen by the Hubble Space Telescope. Already I have prepared the images for our next edition. I have yet but to put them to words, and publish then for you.

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My Dear Readers, while I wrote and viewed this review I found myself in awe. In awe of the solar system we were born, and in awe of my ability to bring it to you. It is not just the images; it is not just the words. It is the combination of both, that brings me to tears. That, surrounded are we, with wonder and joy. With awe inspiring wonders just outside our doors. To find what we lack in ourselves, the beauty the awe and the joy, we need only look up into the night sky. For everything I have shared, with you right here, is just above your head… as you have read.

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Thank you. My Dear Readers I would like to thank you for coming here and joining with me. To but, for a moment, touch the wonder that is. Now, I have the unfortunate task, the unenviable chore. To ask this of you, My Dear Readers, I implore. I find myself engaged in battle, a war so close and near. A battle I am destined to loose, if it were not for you. You kindness and support will make the difference of life. You have just to give it, and I will then thrive.

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Please Donate to Danny’s Cancer Treatment Fund at Indiegogo. Thank you!

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Adieu!

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Thank YOU!

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Danny’s Cancer Treatment Fund @ Indiegogo

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Danny in Rolling Hills Estates August 12, 2014
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© 2010 – 2014 Hanning Web Wurx and The Other Shoe

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About Daniel Hanning
I am a; writer, editor and publisher. I write, most often, articles about our space program, fun videos andpolitical works. My most recent additions are; A Week In Review, Sunday Funnies and The Adventures of Nadia. Along with The Mars Report and Lost in Space. ENJOY!

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