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p. 62. Planet Earthlocked

  • William Lowrie


Two important physical laws determine the behaviour of the Earth as a planet and the relationship between the Sun and its planets: the law of conservation of energy and the law of conservation of angular momentum. ‘Planet Earth’ explains these laws along with the ‘Big Bang’ theory that describes the formation of the solar system: the Sun; the eight planets divided into the inner, terrestrial planets (Mercury, Venus, the Earth, and Mars) and the outer, giant planets (Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune); and the Trans-Neptunian objects that lie beyond Neptune. Kepler’s laws of planetary motion, the Chandler wobble, the effects of the Moon and Jupiter on the Earth’s rotation, and the Milankovitch cycles of climatic variation are also discussed.

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