Asteroids, Comets, Meteors and Dwarf Planets



Other members of solar system

Asteroids: Small bodies that revolve around the Sun in between the orbits of Mars and Jupiter.
Comets: Comets revolve around the Sun in highly elliptical orbits and have very long time period of revolution. It appears as a bright head with a long tail always pointing away from the sun. Eg: Halley's Planet.
Meteors (Shooting Stars): Meteors are small bodies that enter the earth's atmosphere. They get heated up and evaporated before reaching the earth's surface due to the air resistance provided by the atmosphere. Meteors that reach earth's surface are called Meteorites.


Describe and explain comets

Comets are guests of the solar system in the sense that they have very long orbital periods and appear rarely. Major constituents of nucleus of a comet are silicates and matter made up of frozen gases.
Comets are spherical in shape. When they come near the sun they develop tails. Example: Halley's Comet which can be seen once in 76 years.


Asteroids, Comets and Meteorites

Asteroid: An asteroid is a small object in the Solar System that travels around the Sun. It is like a planet but smaller. A few asteroids have asteroid moons. Asteroids are the leftover rock and other material from the formation of the Solar System. These rocks were too small to make a planet, and could not collide but some are made of carbon or metal.
Comets: A comet is a ball of mostly ice that moves around in outer space. They have long "tails" because the Sun melts the ice.
Meteoroid: A meteoroid is a small rocky or metallic body in outer space. When a meteoroid enters earth's surface it catches fire.