the planets in our backyard.

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  • Author(s): Rennie, John
  • Source:
    Scientific American Special Edition. Sep2003 Special Edition, Vol. 13 Issue 3, p2-3. 2p. 1 Color Photograph.
  • Additional Information
    • Subject Terms:
    • Abstract:
      The more we learn about our solar system, the more fascinating it becomes. Though astronomers have begun to detect planetary systems around other stars, the uniqueness of ours is so far intact. Many planets in far-off systems seem to be freakishly large and moving in bizarre orbits that would devastate any alien Earths out there. One of the greatest mysteries of our solar system may be why it is so stable. As this issue goes to press, astronomers are remarking that as Pluto's orbit carries it farther from the sun, the planet's atmosphere is curiously warming up.