Focus on the Moon – By Elizabeth Rose PIN 7430

THE MOON

The Moon or Luna as it was known in Mythological times is the ruling planet of Cancer.

The Moon is actually classed as a satellite of the Earth and not a planet and it is the Earths lone natural satellite.

The Moon is the fifth largest satellite in our solar system.

239,000 miles is the average distance between the Earth and the Moon, this does vary.

You can only see 59% of the Moon from the Earth.

14,658,000 square miles is the surface area of the Moon.

It orbits the Earth at 2,300 miles an hour.

The Moon’s gravity affects the tides on the Earth.

253-387F is the temperature range on the Moon.

When a month has two full moons in it the second Moon is called a blue moon.

It rotates at 10 miles an hour compared to the Earth’s rotation of 1000 miles an hour.

There is no wind on the Moon so any footprints made by astronauts are there to stay.

The heavy space suits worn by astronauts when they landed on the Moon weighed 180 pounds on Earth but only 30 pounds on the Moon due to the lower gravity.

Apollo 11 had only 20 seconds of fuel left when they landed on the Moon.

The top speed recorded in a four wheeled vehicle was 10.56 miles per hour.

February does not have a full moon, but then either January or March will have two full moons.

The Chinese call the dark shadows on the Moon ‘The toad in the moon’

The missions brought back a total of 2196 rock samples weighing 382kg.

We always see the same side of the Moon from the Earth.

The dark spots on the Moon are craters filled with basalt which is a very dense material.

The Moon is the only extraterrestrial body that humans have visited.

Luna 3 was built by the Soviet Union in October 1959 it was the first space craft to send back pictures from the Moon.

It has no global magnetic field.

The diameter of the Moon is about a quarter of the Earth’s diameter – about forty nine moons would fit inside the Earth.

If the Moon is directly above you and you are at the coast then you will see a high tide.

Neil Armstrong was the first man to walk on the Moon.

First quarter, last quarter, full moon and the new moon are the four phases of the Moon.

There are more than 300,000 craters on the Moon and that is on just one side.

Focus on Mercury – by Elizabeth Rose PIN 7430

Mercury

Mercury is the ruling planet for Gemini.

It is named by the Roman deity Mercury which means the messenger of the gods.

It is the smallest and innermost planet in the Solar System.

It takes 87.97 days to orbit around the sun which is the shortest of all the planets in the Solar System.

If you were weighed on Mercury you would weigh 38% of your weight on the earth.

Mercury has no rings or moons maybe this is because it is so close to the sun.

The orbital speed of Mercury is 29 miles and 7 seconds.

176 days on earth is only one day on Mercury.

Mercury has no atmosphere.

It is covered in craters and been dormant for millions of years.

Mercury is the closest planet to the sun and so circulates the sun faster than other planets.

It is estimated that Mercury is 48 million miles from Earth.

The diameter is 3031 miles.

A spacecraft was first sent to Mercury in 1974.

Mercury is 70% metallic and 30% silicate and is known as a terrestrial planet.

Galileo first observed the planet in the 17th century. 

It cannot be seen through some telescopes as the sun is too close and would damage the telescope. 

Mercury is the second densest planet after the earth. 

The temperature on the surface of Mercury ranges from 173c to 472c 

Mercury was hit by an asteroid which was estimated to be 60 miles wide this created a huge crater which is roughly estimated to be 960 miles wide. 

This crater is called the Caloris Basin. 

Ice craters were discovered in the North Pole furthest from the sun. 

Mercury is within the Earth’s orbit but can only be seen early in the morning or late in the evening. 

According to astrology Mercury is associated with intelligence and communication.

Focus on Venus – By Elizabeth Rose PIN 7430

The Planet Venus was named after the Roman goddess of love, probably because it shines so much and stands out in the night sky.

It is the only Planet that is named after a female.

Venus is the second planet from the Sun and is the second brightest in the sky after the Moon.

It orbits the Sun every 224.7 Earth days compared to the Earth’s 365 days.

Venus has the longest rotation period of any planet in the Solar System and it rotates in the opposite direction to most other planets, too.

It does not have any natural satellites.

It is the second largest terrestrial planet and some people refer to it as the Earth’s sister planet as they have a similar size and mass.

It is 108.2million km from the Sun.

It has 460.2 million km surface area.

The thick clouds on Venus reflect most of the sunlight that reaches it back into space – that is why it is so bright. Because it is the brightest,  it can be seen by the naked eye often a few hours after sunset or before sunrise.

Venus has a central iron core and rocky mantle, it is a similar composition to the Earth. However its atmosphere is 96 per cent carbon dioxide and 3 per cent nitrogen and other gases.

It was formed approximately 4.6 billion years ago, when the solar system was a cloud of dusts and gases.

The inner core formed first like the Earth and then other elements formed a crust over the years.

The surface of Venus has is own unique geology and has large meteor craters, volcanoes, erosions and also some sedimentation land forms. However,  these have been smoothed somewhat by lava flows and by the corrosive atmosphere.

In Astrology Venus rules Taurus which brings love,  friendship and all the things that make life worthwhile.