Astronomy

What Is the Closest Planet to Earth in the Solar System?

The closest planet to the Earth means the planet that is Venus. Venus is at the closest distance to the Earth. Many scientists believe that the closest planet to Earth is Venus. Students can learn more about the closest planet to Earth here.

closest planet to earth

Solar System and Planets

The solar system consists of the sun and everything that revolves around it. The revolution takes place under the influence of gravity. Also, planets, moons, comets, asteroids, and meteoroids revolve around the sun.

The division of the eight planets is into four smaller planets and four larger planets. Furthermore, the four smaller planets are the inner terrestrial planets. This is because they are entirely solid just like the Earth. The four larger planets, on the other hand, are gas giants. This is because they are made up of mostly methane with a metal and rock core.

Learn more about Space in detail

The eight planets from innermost to outer most are Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune, and Pluto. Pluto is a dwarf planet whose orbit is quite far away from Neptune most of the time. Also, there is an asteroid belt which contains 7, 80,000 individual asteroids. This asteroid belt lies between Mars and Jupiter.

One important point to note is that the distances between planets become greater in accordance with the increasing distance from the sun. Most noteworthy, the distance from the sun to the mars is only about 1/20th of the distance from the sun to Neptune. The distance from the sun to Saturn is almost twice the distance between the sun and Jupiter.

When one considers distances from the Earth to its neighbor planets, moving from one to next is certainly not like moving on a city street and meeting intersections. Rather, it is like walking a few minutes to reach one destination, then an hour to reach the next, and then many hours and days to reach the others.

Venus: The Nearest Planet to Earth

When an individual imagines the solar system from above, he would picture every planet which revolves around the sun. The individual would notice that the innermost planets take far less time to complete a revolution in comparison to the outer planets.

Mercury’s year is equivalent to 88 Earth’s days. In contrast, Venus’s year is equal to 225 Earth days. This clearly shows that it is quite rare for Mercury, Venus, and Erath to lie in a straight line from the sun. Also, at a certain time, the sun is directly in between the Earth and other planets.

Read more about Solar System here

Venus is the closest planet to Earth at most times and under most circumstances. The orbit of Venus lies at a distance of 67 million miles from the sun. On the other hand, the Earth orbits the sun at a distance of 93 million miles.

Venus is closest to the Earth when it is right between the sun and the Earth. At this point, the distance between the two planets is about 26 million miles apart. This situation takes place every 584 days.

When Venus and Earth are on opposite sides of the sun, the distance between them is around 160 million miles. At this time Mercury orbiting at a distance of around 33 million miles from Earth, is the closest planet to the Earth.

Exploration of Venus

Getting a probe to land to land on Venus is a very difficult task. This is due to the harsh climatic conditions on Venus. Therefore, most imaging of Venus’s surface has taken place through the use of radar.

The Soviet Union began to send a series of spacecraft to Venus in 1960. One of them crashed the surface in 1966. This was the first time a human-made object made contact with another planet’s surface. This spacecraft program of the Soviet Union provided a huge amount of useful information.

NASA launched a craft in 1989. This craft mapped 98% of Venus’s surface for the next five years. In 2006, the European Space Agency launched Venus express. Because of this, a detailed analysis of Venus took place.

Solved Question on Closest Planet to Earth

Q1 Which of the following statements is not true concerning Venus?

A. Venus’s year is equal to 225 Earth days
B. The orbit of Venus lies at a distance of 67 million miles from the sun
C. Venus is a habitable planet just like Earth
D. Venus is the closest planet to Earth at most times

A1 The correct answer is option C., which is “Venus is a habitable planet just like Earth”. This is because Venus is an uninhabitable planet, unlike Earth.

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